Probably the most thrilling experience I've had was going canyon jumping in the Swiss Alps.
I chose to study abroad in Florence, because my family is from Italy and I thought this was the perfect chance for me to experience Italian culture and understand my roots. Initially, I didn't think I would be able to go because I am a Biology major, but after attending the D'Youville Study Abroad information sessions and meeting with my advisor I realized how possible and within reach all of it was.
The classes I took in Florence were so different from the ones on campus. This made the experience all the more interesting. All of the professors were nice and had great stories to tell. The staff in Florence was also great. They were always willing to answer the many questions I had for them. There were so many activities to participate in like walking tours of the city and hiking in Fiesole, or simply going out to lunch and getting to know everyone in the program. I even played on the CAPA soccer team!
Some of the most memorable experiences from my study abroad trip were the farewell dinner with all of the students and teachers together for the last time and the first time I saw Il Duomo and tears came to my eyes. I also got tears of joy when I saw the Trevi Fountain in Rome and the Eiffel Tower in Paris for the first time.
Probably the most thrilling experience I've had was going canyon jumping in the Swiss Alps. On the last night of my study abroad, I sat with my friends on a bridge in Florence and we took in a view of the Ponte Vecchio all lit up. It was absolutely incredible!
My experience definitely transformed me. I've become more independent and I've learned a lot about myself. I am much stronger and I know I'm capable of things I never thought I could do. My study abroad experience made me appreciate and embrace other cultures. In my professional future, I will use this experience to show my confidence and to demonstrate that I'm a highly adaptable person.
Luciana Garozzo Payne
Biology (BS), Chiropractic Doctorate Degree
Study Abroad – Florence, Italy