Fairfield University offers students from any university an opportunity for fun and learning in Ireland or Italy during Spring Break

Fairfield University offers students from any university an opportunity for fun and learning in Ireland or Italy during Spring Break

Fairfield University's University College is offering students from all universities and colleges an alternative to partying away the spring break hours in Cancun or Fort Lauderdale. Have fun and get a course-load of credits under your belt in Ireland or Florence.

University College is offering two Spring Break Study Abroad programs from March 10-19, 2006. The programs offer students an exciting and structured cultural education program that also provides three credits toward their degree.

"An international learning experience has become an invaluable part of a complete undergraduate education," said Susan M. Fitzgerald, associate dean at University College. "These 10-day learning and living programs can provide the kind of knowledge only an on-site experience can provide."

The Dante In Florence program takes students through an in-depth examination of Dante's works, including the "Vita Nuova" and "The Divine Comedy," in the city of the great poet's birth in 1265. Florence is considered by many critics to be the raison d'ĂȘtre for the "Comedy;" Dante wrote of the city and its inhabitants from exile, and the work is an expression of his longing to return. The historical center of Florence preserves many of the houses, streets, churches, and monuments that existed during his time, giving students the opportunity to explore the places and monuments of Dante's Florence.

The course, which is conducted in English by Fairfield University's Director of Italian Studies Mary Ann Carolan, Ph.D., will consider the political, linguistic, theological, and literary ideas that make Dante's works significant in the medieval context, and that continue to challenge and inform modern debates.

Students will be housed close to the House of Dante museum in the Albergo Firenze, a small hotel in the city center.

The program will include visits to the House of Dante; the Baptistery of San Giovanni & the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore; the Uffizi Gallery; the Palazzo Vecchio; the Churches of Santa Croce, Santa Maria Maggiorre, Santa Maria Novella, and Strozzi Chapel; and a day trip to Siena and San Gimignano.

"To study Dante in his native Florence is to understand the culture of his genius," said Dr. Carolan, a professor in the Department of Modern Languages & Literatures in the College of Arts & Sciences at Fairfield University. Dr. Carolan has lived and studied in Florence, Rome and northern Italy. "Students have the unique opportunity to read the Comedy, which is populated with Florentines, in context. We experience firsthand the historical center of Florence that contains the streets that Dante walked, the churches he visited and the monuments that defined his beloved city."

"Drawing on Site: A Beginning Studio Experience on the Western Coast of Ireland," will be taught by Fairfield University's Studio Art Professor Jo Yarrington, MFA, director of the Studio Program in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts of the College of Arts & Sciences.

Ireland continues to offer mystery, beauty, and refuge to its visitors. The western coast is especially rich in visible history, from the 3,500 B.C. Celtic burial sites to the ruins of 11 th -century churches and abbeys, and offers a compelling array of shapes, values, textures and context for the beginning studio practitioner to respond to and record. The program takes place in County Clare, south of Galway City. Students are housed at The Burren College of Art.

"I am very excited about having the opportunity to teach a beginning level, one-week drawing course on the west coast of Ireland," Prof. Yarrington said.

"I have lived, worked, and taught studio art in this area and those experiences changed my life and my work. It is an area rich in history and lore, full of majestic landscapes and haunting music, it would be hard not to offer a powerful, poetic response to those surroundings."

Students from universities other than Fairfield must check with their own schools to make sure the three Fairfield University credits they earn will apply toward their degree.

For more information on either of the Spring Break Study Abroad programs, visit www.fairfield.edu/studyabroad.html or contact University College at (203) 254-4332 or studyabroadoffice@mail.fairfield.edu. Students are encouraged to register soon.

"We designed these programs to provide students an opportunity to both enjoy their spring break in a rich cultural setting, as well as to earn class credits in a structured and supervised program," Fitzgerald said. "As in all of our study abroad programs, we welcome students from other colleges and universities to participate."

University College at Fairfield University is the gateway for individuals seeking undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as professional certificate programs, study abroad and personal enrichment opportunities. With an emphasis on quality,convenience and flexibility, University College offers a wide variety of evening, day, online and weekend programs taught by a distinguished faculty. University College offers an enriching personal and powerful educational experience that is backed by the resources and reputation of a great Jesuit university. For program information e-mail gradadmis@mail.fairfield.edu or visit www.fairfield.edu or call (203) 254-4184.

Posted On: 01-30-2006 10:01 AM

Volume: 38 Number: 147