Italy Study Abroad Story: Maeve Smith

Honors student, Maeve Smith, utilized the Honors Funded Travel Scholarship to travel to Italy this summer. Below is a reflection of Maeve’s experience as well as some of her favorite photos from the trip. Thank you for sharing!

“I have just returned home from my study abroad trip to Italy, a boy was it AMAZING! This trip has truly broadened my horizons and has helped me grow with all kinds of knowledge. This great opportunity allowed me to learn not only about my class on the Mediterranean diet, but also about the culture and history of Italy and their welcoming people. I am so grateful to the Caserta family and Dr. Westerkamp for taking students to the many different cities, historical land marks, and important monuments that remain as important use to the country today.

Aside from the valuable education, I did face one challenge. Walking into this trip, I did not know much about the language, let alone how to read, speak, or understand it. Luckily I have a bit of a background in the Spanish language. One of the coolest things to me about this trip is how I was able to apply that knowledge and use it throughout this study abroad experience. There were many people in Italy who either spoke Spanish, or could understand it – at the very least. This got me excited because it really helped me pick up on the Italian language in identifying the similarities between specific words between both languages.

Also, this experience has allowed me to meet even more interesting and hardworking students that attend Ferris. I went into this study abroad to Italy not knowing a single person from the university who was also going. Initially that made me very nervous, but of course I ultimately have made great friends and connections through this experience. The Caserta’s implement wonderful group activities throughout the trip so that each student attending gets to meet one another.

I could go on and on about how amazing this trip was all around. I am extremely blessed to have gotten such an outstanding opportunity through the Caserta family and Ferris State University for allowing them to continuously run this trip. The history, the sights, the memories, and more have most definitely impacted me in such a positive manner. I would definitely recommend this particular study abroad to all students and faculty of Ferris.”