Florence is ideally located on the Italian peninsula, just hours from the major cities of Milan, Venice, Rome and Naples. In the heart of the beautiful region of Tuscany, home to the Italian Renaissance, Florence is surrounded by extraordinary natural landscapes that have inspired foreign travelers for centuries. The city draws people from around the world with its renowned art collections, creating a stimulating atmosphere that is ideal for students. Also beneficial to students are the famous piazzas that wind through the center of the city, affording plenty of opportunities to meet others and explore.
Lorenzo De'Medici Institute
Established in 1973, the Lorenzo de'Medici Institute offers the opportunity to study in Florence with students from around the world. Located within the city's historic center, the institute includes classrooms in a monastery built in the 13th century and several other buildings in the surrounding area. Most LDM facilities are equipped with a wireless internet connection. All courses, other than Italian language, are conducted in English.
While at Lorenzo de'Medici, students have the support of LDM faculty and staff. They conduct orientation, arrange housing assignments, assist in registering students for courses and are available to help students with any academic or personal issues or concerns.
All students at LDM may choose from a wide array of courses in Italian language, studio arts, art history, and the humanities. Class sizes are small and attendance is mandatory. The faculty at LDM is primarily Italian but there is also a significant number of professors from other countries. The classroom experience combines interactive, discussion-based instruction with traditional European expectations of student ownership of the learning process. Assessment may include mid-term and final examinations as well as on-going written assignments and oral presentations.
Bentley students studying at LDM benefit from a required six-credit intensive Italian course. Placement tests will be given to all students registering for intermediate or higher. In addition, students take three electives (15 credits total).
Accommodations and Meals
Language ability and cultural understanding are fostered through a homestay experience with local Italian hosts. Students live with Italian families around the city. A half-board plan provides students with a continental breakfast and dinner at home with their hosts Monday-Friday while school is in session. Students are not allowed to use the kitchen to prepare their own food. Students share a double room and are able to receive incoming phone calls. Towels and bed linens are provided by the hosts and are laundered each week. Students' hosts will also launder one load of laundry for students each week. Each home will be different and the make-up of the host "family" will vary. Some students may live with a single woman in her 60's while other students may live with a couple and their adult children. It is hoped that students will integrate as much as possible into the home of their hosts, but they will have freedom to come and go as they please.
Students may also select to live in a shared, furnished apartment. Apartments are within walking distance or a short bus ride from the school. Students share double bedrooms and each apartment typically has 2-4 bedrooms. Apartments are modest, and while they have similar facilities, no two are alike. Towels, bed linens and basic kitchen necessities are provided. Students do not have a meal plan and are expected to cook for themselves in the apartments.
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