Beyond the Classroom with Experiential Learning at the Florence University of the Arts

By Anthony Viltro, ISA Italy Site Specialist

For students looking to get more out of their study abroad education than just sitting in a classroom, listening to a professor, and taking notes – the Florence University of the Arts (FUA) makes Experiential Learning a main focus by incorporating it into almost every class offered. FUA’s state-of-the-art facilities give students real-world, hands-on experience beyond the classroom.


For students interested in photography, FUA’s photography studio lets students use the same high-end equipment the pros use. Students will learn how to create perfect lighting, work with professional models, and edit their prints to perfection. Students in a film photography course will develop their own film in FUA’s dark room. Students taking a digital photography class will edit their shots in Photoshop and print out photos with professional grade printers. FUA’s experienced professors will help along the way as students create beautiful masterpieces to add to their portfolio.


For students not interested in photography and who prefer creating something from nothing with their own hands, FUA’s drawing and painting classes will be sure to inspire any artist. The painting and drawing studios at FUA will give students access to everything an artist could need; even Michelangelo would be jealous.

For students interested in graphic design and who prefer to make art with a computer, FUA’s graphic design courses give students access to state-of-the-art computer labs with all the most current graphic design programs at their disposal. Whether they’re creating animated figures to tell a story, or designing furniture, students will have access to everything they need. They’ll even be able to make their designs come to life with FUA’s 3-D printer!


Interested in the culinary arts? Taking a cooking course at FUA’s Apicius School of Hospitality means learning while using professional grade appliances. Beginner classes take place in a professional teaching kitchen, while advanced courses are held in a kitchen modeled after a professional restaurant kitchen, where students will experience what it’s like to be preparing food as a team. Experienced students can intern at the FUA’s restaurant, Ganzo, which is open to the public…it doesn’t get any more real than that!

Not a cook? Not a problem! Students taking Event Management courses can plan special events to be held at Ganzo and students in Hospitality Management courses can work in the front of the house, getting real-world experience managing the restaurant on a busy night.

The Experiential Learning opportunities on ISA Florence programs don’t end there.

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Author: International Studies Abroad (ISA)

Since 1987, International Studies Abroad (ISA) has provided college students in the United States and Canada the opportunity to explore the world. ISA offers a wide variety of study abroad programs at accredited schools and universities in 73 program locations throughout the world.

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