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*WCU Summer in Italy - Food & Sustainable Cultural Heritage in Perugia, Italy
Perugia, Italy (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Summer
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2018 02/01/2018 ** Rolling Admission 05/25/2018 06/30/2018
NOTE: Please note that costs and dates are tentative and subject to change. Contact the Program Directors listed below to confirm the information.

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction: English
Housing Options:
Apartment
Max Credits Offered: 3 Area of Study: Anthropology, Art History, Geography, History, International Relations, Marketing, Sociology
Program Type: WCU Faculty-Led Study Abroad
Available to Non-WCU Students:
Yes
Faculty/Staff Director: Michael Di Giovine
Program Description:
PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
This extraordinary program involves students in an active anthropological research project while introducing them to Italian culture in the best way possible—through its delicious food and rich cultural heritage!

We will spend 5 memorable weeks in the historic city of Perugia, nestled in the mystical hills of Umbria in close proximity to the art of Florence, the spirituality of Assisi, and the vineyards of Tuscany. Under the instruction of West Chester University anthropology professor Michael A. Di Giovine, an internationally recognized scholar on food, tourism and cultural heritage, students will be instructed in the methods of ethnography, anthropology’s unique qualitative research methodology of participating in, and observing, the daily lives of locals. Dr. Lynn Monahan, a registered dietician and sustainability scholar from West Chester’s Department of Nutrition, will co-instruct the course, adding a valuable bio-nutritional perspective. We will be introduced to the rich culinary culture of Italy through exclusive behind-the-scenes tours at organic vineyards, sustainable farms, and country inns—as well as a cooking lesson at our instructor’s home. We will then be placed in groups at a food-related venue among locals who have made their living valorizing and revitalizing their traditional sustainable food practices. Mentored by Dr. Di Giovine and Dr. Monahan, each group will design, carry out, and present their findings of a short-term ethnographic research project at this practicum site. At the end of the course, we may have the opportunity to present our papers at an international conference, and may also publish our papers in a leading food-related Italian magazine. This trip is a must for undergraduates thinking of working in a consulting or research-based profession, as a public health professional, applying to graduate school, or who want a deeper understanding of Italy’s incomparable food traditions!

WCU students earn 3 credits for ANT375: Ethnographic Field School. Graduate students can earn credit as NTD 581. The course runs in WCU Summer Session 1 (late May to the end of June). It will be taught in English, and no Italian language skills are necessary.
 
LOCATION

We will live and conduct our research in the beautiful, historic city of Perugia. Located in the rolling hills of mystical Umbria, home of the ancient Etruscans and St. Francis of Assisi, and at equal distances from Florence, Siena, Rome, and the Adriatic Coast, it truly is at the heart of Italy and boasts some of the most iconic dishes of high Italian cuisine. A medium-sized city whose beautiful, pedestrianized Medieval center that boasts a world-renowned monuments and is built over an underground Etruscan settlement, Perugia is home to one of the most important foreigner universities in Italy (Università per gli Stranieri). Although popular with tourists, it is considerably less “touristy” than Florence, Assisi, Siena, or San Gimignano—all easy excursions from the town. This ensures that Perugia has a welcoming and accommodating infrastructure for English speakers, while still maintaining its “authentic” Italian aura.
 
This course is offered in partnership with the Umbra Institute, and is listed as part of their Sustainable Food Studies program. Students may opt to take a second course in the curriculum to earn a Certificate in Sustainable Food Studies, or another course in Italian language or culture, at a small additional fee. See www.umbra.org/wcu for more information on Perugia, the Umbra Institute’s courses, and student profiles.
 
ACCOMMODATION

Students will share apartments in the historic city center, in walking distance to major historic sites, restaurants, cafes and shopping. Each apartment will have a kitchen, so students can feel free to cook on their own if they don’t want to eat out all of the time. Dr. Di Giovine will also take students on an orientation tour of their surroundings, including a shopping trip at the market followed by a cooking demonstration in his home.
 
LANGUAGE

The course will be taught in English, and Italian skills are not necessary (though certainly welcome!). Students who have knowledge of Spanish, Portuguese, or French may quickly pick up Italian, and we encourage you to take an Italian language course through our partner, The Umbra Institute, if you would like!
 
COURSE INFORMATION

WCU students earn 3 credits for ANT375: Ethnographic Field School. The course will also be cross-listed as a undergraduate/graduate course (NTD 435 / 535) in the Nutrition department.

In addition, for a small additional fee, students may take a second course from The Umbra Institute in areas such as history, archaeology, international business and marketing, Roman history, English, dance, art history, Italian, or sustainable food studies.
 
Should students take the course, Sustainable Food, in addition to the Ethnographic Field School, they will earn a certificate in Sustainable Food Studies.
 
For more information on these courses, or on Perugia, please view www.umbra.org/wcu.
 
EXAMPLES OF EXCURSIONS

We will be utilizing a hands-on approach to learning about, and researching, Italian culture in Perugia. This includes conducting ethnographic research, but it also involves specially organized behind-the-scenes tours at organic vineyards, historic country inns, sustainable farms, and local markets. We will enjoy pizza-making and gelato-making demonstrations, as well as a cooking lesson. Free time will be offered for students to travel to the Florence, Siena, Rome, or the beaches in the Adriatic Coast. Select students may also contribute to a special research project on food and solidarity movements in Central Italy.

Highlights:
Live in the historic center of Perugia, a city that boasts medieval architecture, Renaissance art, and even an entire underground Etruscan city.

Gain valuable ethnographic training while conducting a collaborative research project with professional anthropologists. Qualitative research skills are becoming increasingly important in the professional world!

Try your hand at making pizza during a special demonstration at a local pizzeria.
Enjoy an exclusive visit to a biodynamic vineyard overlooking the medieval village of Assisi and its famed Basilica of St. Francis.

Learn how to make gelato—Italy’s delicious ice cream—at an exclusive demonstration with a master gelataio who teaches at Italy’s famed Gelato University!
Savor fresh Italian cuisine at historic country inns (agriturismi) and sustainable farms in the Umbrian countryside.
Search for the elusive and highly prized summer truffle with an amiable truffle hunter and his incomparably sweet dogs.
Compare diverse local vineyards and winemaking perspectives during the Cantine Aperte wine festival.
Learn the secrets of making fresh pasta at a cooking lesson at your instructor’s home.

Study and work alongside local organic food producers who have dedicated their lives to continuing their traditional, sustainable food practices.  
 
PROGRAM COSTS
The program fee for this program is $3,895, which will be billed through the WCU Bursar's office as part of the summer bill. This includes apartment, airport transfers in Italy, special visits as advertised above, some meals (welcome and farewell dinners, cooking lesson, gelato night, and all visits), and three transfer credits for ANT375. In addition, all participants will be billed the $100 Study Abroad Application Fee through the WCU Bursar's office upon applying to the program and will be required to purchase the WCU mandatory international insurance for this program post-acceptance.

Additional costs not included in the costs above are: airfare, most meals, and spending money. In certain circumstances, you might need a transcript issued by a U.S. based university; the fee is $250 for this. Please see Dr. Di Giovine if you have questions, as most will not need this.
 
CONTACT INFORMATION
For more information, please contact Dr. Di Giovine at mdigiovine@wcupa.edu, 610-436-2247 (office), or stop by his office in Old Library 006B between 10:30-3:00 on most Tuesdays and Thursdays. You can also contact Dr. Monahan at lmonahan@wcupa.edu. More information on Dr. Di Giovine’s work on the anthropology of food and cultural heritage can be found at www.michaeldigiovine.com.