Centered in Tuscany, Florence lies on the bank of the Arno river and is home to roughly 460,000 people. It is a city steeped in historical importance and is perhaps best known for giving rise to such Renaissance notables as Michelangelo and the Medicis. A mixture of modern and old, Florence receives countless tourists and students each year and offers a wonderful array of academic, cultural, gastronomic, historical, and commercial venues of interest. For many of these reasons and more, Florence is an ideal location for students considering an academic program in a culturally rich setting.
The mission of Studio Art Centers International (SACI) is to provide a focused studio art studies program of depth and seriousness of challenge at undergraduate and graduate U.S. university levels. The studio disciplines are to be complemented by courses in the humanities since Studio Art Centers International is convinced that undertaking courses in both areas is essential in the formation of the artist. SACI's goals are to make the overseas study experience pertinent by ensuring that the highest level of instruction in all areas is made available and providing in optimal settings creative intellectual and aesthetic opportunities for the formative artist. SACI is therefore dedicated to providing an excellent and balanced curriculum of sufficient breadth and scope; a teaching plant adequate and appropriate to art studies in varied disciplines and techniques; and a motivated staff and administration whose preparation and philosophy is that most suitable to enable students to realize the full potential of a study period abroad. Understanding other cultures and the promotion of international exchange are implicit in SACI's mission.
This program offers courses in drawing, painting, printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, computer art, art history, Italian, and Italian studies. A wide variety of academic and studio subjects are offered, many at multiple levels. You must take 5 classes per semester. Students will register for a minimum of 12 credits, and can enroll in a maximum of 15 credits per semester.
Education Abroad (EA) does not require the completion of specific courses prior to departure. However, some Penn State departments or colleges (e.g., the Smeal College of Business) may require students to complete certain courses prior to studying abroad; please check with your department or college to see if you have any specific departmental requirements.
Education Abroad Credits
You will receive credit for all academic courses taken at this institution, and all of your grades from abroad will count toward your Penn State cumulative GPA. You may not take any courses overseas of a Pass/Fail basis.
To see what kind of credit students in past semesters have received for courses taken on this program, visit the Florence SACI Course Equivalency List. Keep in mind you will need to complete the course equivalency process once you have been accepted to your program and after you have completed your registration abroad. To obtain specific instructions on this process visit our Course Equivalencies page. To learn how the courses on this program can work into your individual degree audit, meet with your academic adviser.
Students may not fulfill GHA (General Health and Activity) general education requirements abroad.
Housing and Meals
The experience of local shopping and meeting neighbors provides a long-lasting cultural impact for a student seeking to understand Italy. SACI apartments are fully furnished and allow students to live independently. All apartments have bathrooms and kitchens, and are fully equipped with stoves, refrigerators, heat, and hot water. The SACI accommodation fee includes reasonable utilities usage and an administrative fee.
For more information on program costs, please be sure to review the Budget Sheets listed above. These budget sheets include information on costs that are billable to the bursar bill, as well as estimated additional costs. Costs vary by program, so it is important to review this information carefully.
Please note that tuition rates above may vary depending on major and class standing.
Financial Aid & Scholarships
Penn State students studying through Education Abroad can use most components of their existing financial aid packages toward the cost of study abroad. This may include federal and state grants, VA educational benefits, federal student loans, and University scholarships and grants. Notable exceptions include work-study awards and some athletic scholarships.
The University Office of Global Programs also administers a number of grants and scholarships. Eligibility is based on academic excellence and/or financial need. There is also funding available for study abroad programs in diverse locations and for students from diverse backgrounds. In most cases, applicants should have a current year FAFSA on file with the Office of Student Aid. Funding opportunities may also be available through Penn State academic departments. For detailed information on financial aid and scholarship opportunities and application procedures, please see Funding Study Abroad.
For More Information
For more information about this program and education abroad at Penn State, we encourage you to meet with our Peer Advisers. These study abroad returnees can explain program options, give an overview of the education abroad process, as well as provide information about his/her program. Students at University Park can also contact their International Coordinator within their college. If you're not at University Park, students at Commonealth Campuses can contact their Campus Global Representative.
To learn more about the specifics of this program, schedule an appointment with Kate Fox, the education abroad adviser for this program.
For the inside scoop on life in a foreign country, be sure to check out the GeoBlogs of Penn State students currently studying abroad.