Staff Spotlight: Dario Fazzi

Internship Programs Coordinator


Dario Fazzi, is visiting professor at Ghent University and works as researcher at the Roosevelt Study Center in Middelburg. He earned degrees from the University of Bologna (BA and PhD) and Roma Tre (MA) in Italy, and has also held visiting fellowships at SUNY-Albany and Brown University in the United States. At MAAS, he coordinates the internship programs and is really glad to supervise students’ theses. His researching and teaching philosophy is centered on the idea that people, whose role has been often overshadowed by power politics, are instead legitimate and significant agents of historical development.

Did YOU study abroad?! If so, where and what inspired you to go?

During my academic career, both as a student and as a young researcher, I had the opportunity to study and work abroad. Honestly, no experience has been more rewarding than that one. Living in another country and experiencing its culture and habits put me – and many of my local prejudices – at test.

This process definitely enriched me and opened my mind: I saw things from another perspective, learned alternative methods of studying and approaching life in general, as well as broadened my horizons. As far as I am concerned, living abroad is a process that every citizen of our global era should have the opportunity to do, at least once in a lifetime.

Which study abroad destination is most underrated? Conversely, which is most overrated?

I think that Europe should claim a leading role in this. Many of the European Universities can combine high academic quality with beautiful and historical locations, a feature that can really be considered Europe's most unique selling point. Just think about Brussels, Amsterdam, or Paris, all of which are in short distance from Ghent, another great city where to live and study. Nothing against it, but Cambridge, UK, is a place I wouldn't live in.

What country have you always wanted to visit?

I always dreamt about the U.S. and I had the opportunity to explore it, although there are many places in that country I still would like to reach, as Seattle, for instance. I also liked Latin American countries and it has been a great surprise for me to discover a country that isn't a usual destination for tourists, like Paraguay. I really would like to visit Australia and Canada and, one day, maybe have the time to explore Turkey as well.

What does your home-country's culture value that is taught in your program?

Being an Italian teaching American stuff makes me in the perfect position to analyze and relativize many of the dysfunctions of the American political system. Plus, the long history of my home country helps me adopting a wider perspective when tackling current issues and contemporary developments. What I really like at MAAS is that it combines a lot of European perspectives so that it can really provide students with a genuine transatlantic vision of the U.S.