This blog has been created to share the College of Staten Island (CSI) students’ experiences around the world. Dolphins across the Seven Seas provides the opportunity for CSI students, staff, faculty and beyond to gain insight into the study abroad experience. Additionally, Study Abroad Peer Advisors provide reflections upon their experiences as well as advice to potential study abroad participants. CSI is the single senior college of the City University of New York (CUNY), located in the borough of Staten Island.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Returning to Europe ~Anthony Manzi, Study Abroad Peer Advisor, Rome, Italy, Spring 2010 and Florence, Italy, Spring 2011

 As a first generation Italian American with family scattered throughout Italy, Switzerland, and Spain, I figured I would one day visit Europe, but never thought I would get the chance to study and live in Italy for a full year! Ciao, mi chiamo Anthony Manzi. I’m a senior at CUNY College of Staten Island, and I studied abroad in Rome during the spring semester of 2010 and in Florence during the spring semester of 2011. After living on Staten Island for a number of years you get the feeling of being cooped up in a small place with a whole world out there to explore.

The first time I ever stepped foot in Europe was Fiumicino International Airport right outside of Rome. I will never forget my first day living in a different country, taking on the great adventure that is the Eternal City, meeting my five other roommates, making new friends and meeting locals of Trastevere and Monteverdi (neighborhoods of Rome).

After living in New York and frequenting Manhattan on almost a weekly basis you already have a sure feeling of how living in a major city would be – skyscrapers, fast living, lots of people, sightseeing, etc. – until you arrive in an ancient city such as Rome, with world famous structures and sculptures such as il Colosseo, la Fontana di Trevi, la Scala di Spagna, la Piazza del Popolo, and of course the center of the Roman Catholic Church, la Citta del Vaticano. These historic structures, a couple of them even considered some of the greatest sites in the world, are places you don’t get to see very often in your life, let alone live by them!

While living in a travel hub, with a schedule of 12 credits and decently difficult classes, I had a good amount of schoolwork to do, but also some time to travel throughout the great continent of Europe. I’ve visited eclectic cities from Madrid, Spain to Paris, France to Sofia, Bulgaria to Athens, Greece to Dublin, Ireland, and many more, including the Islands of Malta and the Canaries. Each country, but more specifically each city, has its own unique culture and lifestyle to it, which I’d rather you find out on your own and not spoil it for you!

Since the beginning of my initial study abroad experience in Rome of Spring 2010, I believe that the travel bug has bitten off more than it can chew when it comes to my expeditions- gazing over the snow covered Swiss Alps, sailing on a private yacht around the azure Mediterranean islands of Malta, island hopping right through the scenic Greek Isles, wine tasting throughout the province of Tuscany, even enjoying a cold one at the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin. Travelling has become a big part of my life, so much that I have recently acquired a job for the fall semester of 2012, with one of Europe’s best student travel companies, Bus2Alps. Not Only will I be able to live in Europe once again, I will be travelling every weekend and work as a tour guide - not to mention getting paid to do what I love! So, for any of you students that are thinking of studying abroad in Europe, hopefully, I will see you on the other side. Arrivederci e Buona Fortuna a tutti!