Food and Culture in Siena
The program includes ample excursions for field-based learning opportunities to many exquisite and less traveled towns and villages of Tuscany and neighboring regions.
The Food and Culture program will also include opportunities for classroom, field-based, and service learning. You will learn firsthand from everyday people: farmers, family cooks and professional chefs, and creative entrepreneurs who are building internationally recognized sustainable food businesses that preserve and celebrate regional heritage.
All majors are welcome; courses may be suitable for students in food studies, business, environmental studies, sociology, international studies, geography, humanities and anthropology.
|Term||Year||Priority Deadline||Deadline||Arrival Date||Departure Date|
You will typically enroll in two to three courses in addition to the required Food and Culture and Cross-Cultural Communications courses. All courses offered in Siena are recognized and approved for academic credit by various GEO partner institutions. Actual credit awarded is determined by the relevant department at your university in consultation with the study abroad office. Check with your study abroad advisor for more information.
Courses are taught by Italian faculty who have experience teaching US students, including supplementary language tutoring offered by the site director. You will attend classes with other US students, and as part of the Cross-Cultural Communications course, you will meet with Italian students from the Università di Siena at the Language Lab or in classes at the university. Courses make use of a variety of materials and texts, all of which are provided as part of the program fee. Italian language courses are held in the afternoon.
- Cross-Cultural Communications/Cross-Cultural Perspectives (2 UO quarter credits)
- Food and Culture in Italy (4 UO quarter credits)
- Food, Law, Social Justice (5 UO quarter credits)
- Italian Language (101, 103, 203)(5 UO quarter credits)
- Wine in Italy and the Western World (4 UO quarter credits)
- Picturing People: Italian Art and Society During the Renaissance (5 UO quarter credits)
Optional Service Learning Placement:
Students are welcome to participate in a service learning placement as part of the Cross-Cultural Perspectives course. If you opt for the service learning placement, you will be required to make both a personal and a professional commitment. As part of the Cross-Cultural Perspectives in Service Learning course, you will design a project in partnership with your organization host, conducting a needs and skills assessment. Over the course of the term, you will continue to develop your project while reflecting on your involvement and the cross-cultural context in which you are participating. At the conclusion of the program, you will present a portfolio of reflection papers, resumé, and project analysis. A service learning placement requires flexiblity and commitment to the internship schedule and entailed responsibilities. Because of the time commitment required, you may sometimes have to forgo a program activity or excursion in order to fulfill your responsibilities to the organization.
An optional service learning placement is an exciting opportunity for students studying in Siena, Italy, during the fall or spring to immerse themselves in the local Sienese culture. Placements vary by term. In the past students have volunteered at local retirement homes, ceramic arts programs for community members with disabilities, pre-school and elementary schools, and rescue and social services.
- Butini Bourke - Retirement Home
- Riuscita Sociale - Ceramic Arts program
- San Benedetto - Pre-school
UO students: please refer to the UO Course Equivalency Process and the UO Office of the Registrar Course Equivalency Database.
Non-UO students: Actual credit awarded is determined by the relevant department at your university in consultation with the study abroad office. Check with your study abroad advisor for more information.
Experience life as part of an authentic Italian neighborhood, living within the medieval city walls of Siena. Residences are spread out within the city center. All are within easy walking distance (~15 min) of the GEO Center, and you will have small local grocers, restaurants, and cafés nearby.
You have two housing options, each with its own perks. You will be able to provide your preference, though we cannot guarantee that we can accommodate everyone in their first choice.
Apartments: Apartments are fully furnished with beds, desks and a kitchen table and chairs. No two apartments are the same. Generally, there are 2-3 rooms per apartment, and you can expect to share a bedroom with one or two other GEO students. The kitchens are equipped with utensils, plates, glasses, cookware, an electronic oven and a gas stove. You will also receive two sets of linens and each apartment has access to a washing machine and drying rack (dryers are very uncommon in Italy).
Student Residence: You can live in a residence with other international and Italian students, fully immersing yourself into the community. The student residence has single and double rooms, some with ensuite bathrooms and some with shared bathrooms (no more than 3 people/bathroom). Each room has a TV, fridge/freezer, safe, desks, nightstand, and sink. Kitchen and living areas are shared with your floor (~8 people/kitchen, students often enjoy cooking together or share meals with each other). Linens and towels are provided, and your rooms are cleaned weekly.
GEO programs are under continuous review during this period of global uncertainty and limited travel. All program details outlined on this page, including program cost, are subject to change if global or location-specific conditions require modifications to program structure.
To learn more about COVID regulations while studying abroad, visit our FAQ page.