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We thank you for encouraging and supporting your student to study abroad with Gonzaga-in-Florence. That is not an easy thing to do in today’s world. The longer students are abroad the more recognizable the changes in them may be. Nothing will be quite the same for them when they return. It may be a defining moment in their lives. When students return, parent usually find them to be:
Why should students study abroad?
If you asked a student the question, he/she may say to learn another language, learn a new culture, to travel and have fun. Those are true but studying abroad is that and so much more. Students who study abroad:
"I have already noticed a difference that this last semester abroad has made, even in just a week. In classes, I have a much broader frame of thought and it is interesting seeing different arguments and opinions after experiencing some other cultures and perceptions of all these different issues. I am taking a couple law classes this quarter and there is a lot of history involved and it is so amazing to discuss different events that have occurred and knowing that I was in some of these places just months ago. Last Tuesday, the Bosnian conflict came up in one of these class discussions. It was almost humorous because I feel like I can't even go a couple hours in a discussion without thinking of something relating to last semester abroad, whether it be something I learned or experienced or just saw during the trips." - Alex, University of Washington student who participated in the Gonzaga-in-Florence semester program.
"Florence instantly felt like home with the help of the entire Gonzaga-in-Florence faculty and staff. There are no other study abroad programs like it - a once in a lifetime opportunity. Nothing compares to the places we traveled, the sights we saw, and the memories we made. Going to Florence was the best decision I have made to date." -Via, Gonzaga University student who participated in the Gonzaga-in-Florence year program.
"My Gonzaga-in-Florence experience was completely life changing. My education has been enriched in ways that I never imagined. As a history major, I learned about Auschwitz, Dachau, the Polish invasion, and the wars in the Balkans and I have now been to all those places. My travels, tours around Florence, and interactions with different cultures have made me understand humanity and my spirituality in ways that were never possible in the classroom, I grew as a person and accomplished things I never thought I could do." - Katie, Saint Mary's College student who participated in the Gonzaga-in-Florence year program.
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“I just returned from a weeks stay in Florence with my daughter who is enrolled in the Gonzaga-in-Florence summer study abroad program. I wanted to take a moment and thank all of the staff who work so hard to ensure the quality of the classes, safety, travel and housing for this program. Having now been there, met the Gonzaga-in-Florence staff, visited where the classes are held and spent time and a meal at one of the pensione, I am really overwhelmed with the quality and care that has been provided to my daughter. I would be remiss not to also include thanks to her instructors. I would also like to thank the support staff in Spokane who work so hard behind the scenes compiling the handbook for parents (this was so helpful!) and the endless paper work for visas, passports etc. In the last 7 weeks, I have seen such a wonderful transformation in my daughter as a result of her time spent in Florence. Please accept my sincere gratitude to all of you for your dedication, hard work and effort to provide this quality experience.” - Nancy, mother of student who participated in the Gonzaga-in-Florence summer program.
> For additional parent testimonials, click here.
“Our son told us that the last four months have been the BEST experience of his life. He talks about all the beautiful places he saw and the interesting people he met. When he talks, he sounds so much older and more mature. He is at peace with himself, yet he is different somehow. I think he is filled with the accomplishment of living away in a foreign place and having grown so much. I can tell that he was deeply touched by your program. THANK YOU. THANK YOU. I'm sure he lived and learned more in four months than most of us do in a lifetime.” - Diane, mother of student who participated in the Gonzaga-in-Florence semester program.
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