As the birthplace of the Renaissance, Florence provides the perfect backdrop for first-year courses that count towards your humanities and social sciences requirements. Watch The New York Times36 Hours in Florence and discover why so many students choose Florence as their study-abroad destination.

The City

From Giotto to Gucci and all those in between, Florence has remained a perpetual fount of creativity and intellectual thought. Renaissance palaces and the Ponte Vecchio aside, you’ll find that Florence rivals most world-class cities in the matters of food, cultural events, and sheer academic opportunity. It’s also a commercial, industrial and tourist center, as well as a rail junction that t provides easy access to many of Italy’s great cities.

The Program

Launched in 2007, the Discovery Florence program continues to grow as it brings together adventurous first-year students in a vibrant city rich with some of the world’s most famous history, art, and architecture. You’ll take courses that count toward your humanities and social sciences requirements and learn Italian language (no proficiency required) in the classroom and at home with your host family. Past Discovery Florence courses have included Italian Art and Society, Liberty and Power from the Ancient World to Modernity, and Italian 101.

The Campus

Syracuse University in Florence (SUF) was founded in 1959 and is one of the oldest study abroad programs in Italy. The main campus of SUF is the Villa Rossa and houses classrooms, a lounge, computer facilities with wireless Internet, a coffee bar, and a courtyard garden. The campus also houses the Villino, with its extensive English-language library of more than 11,000 volumes. The SUF campus is a 10-minute walk from the historic city center and is surrounded by a lovely residential neighborhood and a variety of local shops and businesses.

“Something special happens to Discovery students in Italy, which they bring back with them to the home campus: invariably they’re inspired to seek out leadership positions in various student organizations and get involved in all aspects of campus life. It’s not a coincidence that a large percentage of DF students also tend to study abroad again during their college career; in Italy they learn to be citizens of the world.”

— Sasha Perugini, Director, Syracuse University Florence