CET Florence

Video and Photos

view of Florence from Piazzale Michelangelo
Spontaneous scuba diving off the coast of Italy!
Enjoying the sunset on Elba Island.
No white sand on the beaches of Elba? How about white rocks? Yes please.
At the top of the Duomo-me on top of the world!
CET academic programs, CET florence, italy, florence
CET academic programs, CET florence, italy, florence
CET Housing
CET Housing
CET academic programs, CET florence, italy, florence
CET academic programs, CET florence, italy, florence

About

Want to study in one of Italy's most beautiful and cosmopolitan cities? Looking to travel to a different European destination every weekend? The CET Florence program provides individual attention from professors and staff, first-rate academics, and the chance to embrace Italian culture—you can visit the Gucci factory or learn from a Tuscan chef. Check off major requirements with classes like Cross-Cultural Psychology or International Marketing. Try something new with Renaissance Art and Architecture...the class meets at least half the time in a museum, church, or piazza. You'll take Italian, too. Choose to live in an apartment with CET peers, or in a homestay with an Italian family. CET Florence is open to students of all majors, from all universities. There is no language prerequisite.

Highlights
  • Academically engaging courses that suit a variety of majors
  • 4-day group excursion to Rome & Tivoli
  • Out-of-classroom learning & assignments
  • Italian language classes
  • Live in the downtown area of beautiful Florence: apartment or homestay options available

Questions & Answers

Hi Kimberly, After you're accepted to CET Florence, we provide a packing guide resource on what to bring and what not to bring. Generally, you just need a laptop for coursework, clothes, and personal items. Your apartments are fully equipped with linens, blankets, pillows, towels, and kitchen equipment, so there's no need to bring any of these supplies from the US. Get in touch with us if you have...

Reviews

93%
based on 28 reviews
  • Academics 7.2
  • Support 8.8
  • Fun 8.9
  • Housing 8.3
  • Safety 9.1
  • Growth 10
  • Support 10
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 10
  • Safety 10
Showing 1 - 15 of 28
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Randall
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My Semester in Florence

My semester abroad was unique in that I was doing it my first semester of freshman year. This is not normally an experience that many have but my university offers it. I admit I was nervous going in but as soon as I arrived I began to relax. The friends that I met and the staff at CET made the program all the more enjoyable and safe and made me realize I had nothing to worry about. The classes are academically challenging but not overbearing and I was able to travel around Europe often while keeping up with my work. The staff at CET were very helpful in helping me to integrate into Italian society and made the whole experience that much smoother. I met many friends, both locals and other study abroad students alike, and I can definitely say one should not fear being isolated during an experience like this. This semester has easily been the highlight of my life so far, and even though it is not an easy thing to uproot one's life and live in another country, I would 100% recommend the CET program in Florence.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Make as many friends as possible and don't be afraid to challenge yourself.
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Estella
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

CET and NYFA Joint Program

Overall, I enjoyed my time in this program. Florence is a beautiful city and I’ve definitely gotten attached. The food was amazing, and nothing beats a cappuccino for €1 when you’re used to starbucks gouging you $5 for the same thing, but with subpar coffee. On the academic front, I found both my Italian classes and my film classes to be challenging. But the most challenging part of the program overall was the schedule. When NYFA classes began, i had class Monday-Friday from 9:30-6:30. In addition to the crazy fast deadlines for projects, this created some stress. However, it was worth it in the end. I learned so much about filmmaking and this course has helped me grow a lot as an artist. All of the faculty and staff on this program were so helpful in facilitating this growth. I do wish, though, that there had been more people in the program. It would have been nice to have more people to mingle with.

What would you improve about this program?
One thing that i would suggest to improve the program is making the schedule more reasonable. At NYFA I had class more hours than a full time job. Also there’s no way to get any absences waived for any reason. I also was initially forwarded a syllabus before beginning the program that led me to believe that in part of the course we would learn how to shoot on physical film and an entirely different digital camera, but that never happened.
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jennifer
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

An unexpected surprise!

So a lot of people ask me why I chose to study abroad in Italy and honestly its a very boring answer... I just picked whatever program gave me what I needed in terms of credits. Which is super awesome that I can easily transfer my credits from CET to my current school but also I had no idea what to expect. I didn't speak a single word of Italian and knew absolutely nothing about the Italian culture. And now looking back, I feel so incredibly grateful to have been able to have this experience.

CET was the best choice for me because of my academic credits I was able to receive and also because of all the resources they provided for me. I took two classes there. One was an Italian Food and Culture class where we took field trips every week to a chocolate tasting, cooking class, wine tasting, olive oil vineyard, etc. It was just an amazing experience being able to do those things because it allowed me to further immerse myself in the Italian culture. And also, I probably would not have done those things on my own. I learned so much about the Italian culture and it was so great being able to live in their country and truly understand everything because of what I was learning in my class. The other class I took was a beginner Italian class and my teacher was one of the best people I met on my trip! She was like my second mom abroad.

The whole of CET staff while I was there was just so considerate and accommodating. They were there for you for anything! They truly understand the mindset of someone who is going abroad in a foreign country and won't hesitate to help you out with whatever you needed from restaurant recommendations, safety tips, and travel tips as well. They wanted me to make the most of everything there and I truly feel like I did because of their help.

The best part of my trip was the my apartment. It was so nice not having to deal with finding an apartment on my own. They worked out all those details and I also decided to go with random roommates within the program because I didn't know anyone else going abroad. The apartment was in a great location and very close to everything I needed. The best part about the apartment was how lucky I was to have met three other incredibly great friends! We travelled together every weekend, ate every meal together, and honestly just spent every second together.

I had no idea that when I went abroad I would get back such a rewarding experience. I honestly don't think it would have been the same if I had done a different program because they everyone at CET in Florence was so helpful and understanding. I think that's really important when you're deciding to do something you've never done before.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
If I could do it all over again, I would have chosen the spring semester instead of summer. It was too short!!!
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Yi-Chia
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing and Unforgettable Semester in Florence

As an international student in US, I thought I already knew what it would be like to study abroad, but studying in Florence was a totally different and amazing experience! The balance between academic work and extracurricular activities was great. The professors were all so passionate. For my renaissance art history class, we went to different museums almost every week. For other class such as wine studies, we also had field trips to go to wineries, enoteche and restaurants. The courses were conducted in the way that students could learn the core materials from the everyday life, as well as learnt about the Italian culture.
The staffs on the program also gave me a lot of help. They also gave me a lot of good and valuable suggestions when I lived there. For example, once I was trying to get a second-hand guitar there. They searched online for me and wrote down how to get there with lots of details to make sure I would not get lost. I still remember they always greeted everyone warmly with smile and I still appreciate and miss them a lot!
The other part that I really enjoyed a lot was the home stay. I lived in a cute and great family. I was able to experience the local Italian people's life. Cooking with the family and talking with them about the life in school was very heartwarming. They also helped me connected to the neighborhood by introducing their friends to me. The days staying with them were probably one of the most important and memorable time in my life. And I can't wait to go back to see them.
CET Florence helped me broaden my view, make more new friend and I really enjoy my time studying there!

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
I would seize all the chance to speak and practice my Italian. I was too shy to talk to other people in Italian so i usually just talk to the waiters and the cashiers or other local people in English,,,
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Summer
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Would Recommend

I enjoyed how the program had 3 different schools that were taking the same classes. It gave everyone an opportunity to interact with students and form friendships with individuals that we may not have ever met. However, they did segregate the classes depending on which school you attended which didn't give an opportunity to collaborate during class.

My CET experience was very unique and something I will never forget. Through CET Florence, I gained a better understanding of cultures different than I’ve ever interacted with. The immersive classroom setting was a great way to retain more knowledge. Housing was probably one of my favorite parts of the whole program. My roommates and I lucked out on a very cute apartment in a very authentic neighborhood of Florence. On top of all this, CET’s program helped me become more self-sufficient and independent.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
The program had a lot of resources and activities available for all students. If I did my study abroad semester all over again, I would definitely take advantage of everything CET has to offer.
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Nicole
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Best 4 months of my life!

My time in Florence was absolutely incredible. I had great housing with a central location so it was easy to explore, and I got to see a beautiful view of the Ponte Vecchio on my way to class every day. There was a fairly wide variety of classes to take, so every student could find things they were interested in. Many of the classes made a large effort to interact with the local environment in order to differentiate the classes from ones at home, and that was a really great way to see differences between the US and Italy. The staff was all very friendly and nice, and Giada (Student Life and Services Coordinator) even took me out to coffee a few times to help me practice my Italian! I wouldn't trade this experience for anything in the world and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in a wonderful semester in Florence.

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
I tried tripe (trippa alla fiorentina) and it was really strange and new for me. Can't say I was a huge fan, but it was fun to try something new!
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Sophia
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Semester in Florence

My semester in Florence was incredible! The CET staff was very helpful and engaging, and the CET activities were a great way to engage with Italian culture and with Italian locals. I loved living in a city with such beautiful culture, buildings, and landscapes for a few months. I also loved traveling around Europe, and I would highly recommend traveling to smaller Tuscan towns near Florence to get a true feel for Italian life. I personally really liked Arezzo and Volterra. Learning how to travel practically is also a good learning experience and I feel that I have become more confident in solo travel. And of course, the food in Florence is amazing and I have never eaten better pasta. This was such a fun experience and I would recommend a semester abroad in Florence to anyone!

What was your funniest moment?
Observing local Italian locals interacting with each other is always interesting. It is funny to watch drivers get angry at each other and use the stereotypical Italian hand gestures to communicate.
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Sophia
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

4 months I will never forget!

I always said I would never be one of those students that claimed "abroad changed me", but I was wrong. After spending 4 months in a new country and navigating a new way of life, it has definitely left an impact on who I am today. Never would I have felt so confident in a place where I did not know the local knowledge, or have the patience with things not going as planned. Abroad allowed me to have a reality check on life, and I am so thankful. I will come back to campus less stressed about school work and realize it is important to savor the moment- indulge in a 3 hour dinner if necessary. I was able to practice Italian with locals, find my favorite spots to study, and master the grocery store. You cannot truly experience a place by just visiting, you need to live there and see it first hand for an extended period of time. Sure there were times where I cried and was homesick, but most of the time I was able to try a new gelato with friends or wait at an airport to check off another place on my bucket list. CET staff were helpful with trip planning, housing issues and being just a local guide to the city. They knew where all the gyms were, how to find the authentic leather stores and how to navigate the post office. They also planned weekly events such as a cooking class or opera night to help me get acclimated with the city and my peers. I am so grateful to have had them every step of the way. Abroad has been one of the most impactful moments of my life, and I will never forget it. I do not understand why it never crosses the mind for some people, since there is nothing better!

What would you improve about this program?
I had a lot of housing issues at the beginning of the semester, that were easily solved and CET helped me as soon as I had doubts. I cannot thank them enough! I just wish I was better prepared for what the housing situation was to be like. If I had known before that some things were commonplace in Italy, I would have been better adjusted.
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Diana
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Incredible Summer in a Perfect City!

I honestly can't imagine having a better experience anywhere in the world than I did this summer in Florence with CET! Living in an apartment in the heart of Florence was such a unique experience and, unlike with programs that house students in dorms, I actually got to immerse myself in the city life and have the independence to explore the city. I loved how invested the professors were in their subjects and, though the courses were challenging, I really found myself enjoying them and learning a lot! I didn't know how many field trips we'd take in Food and Culture, but being on-site for most classes was amazing - we even got to take a cooking class at Cordon Bleu! Italy itself is so beautiful and easy to navigate from Florence since it's so centrally-located. Already counting down until I can go back!

What would you improve about this program?
I do wish I had known about the amount of work required by the classes before starting the program - they were worthwhile but I definitely wasn't prepared. Be ready for hard work but an incredible experience with more than enough free time to explore!
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Bethany
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

An amazing summer!

CET Florence was amazing this summer! From the first day we arrived in Florence, we were taken by CET to an amazing lunch with multiple courses and delicious, authentic food. I loved that we were taken on field trips every Tuesday—we even had a cooking class where we made our pizza and gelato! The classes were great. CET brought one Vanderbilt professor, who was great. I also took a class with an Italian professor who was probably the best professor I’ve ever had. CET clearly put a lot of effort into choosing their professors. The housing was also great. Our apartment was centrally located and very spacious. All of the staff made sure we were comfortable in it. They also helped us find amazing restaurants and helped us with all our travel plans. Thank you CET for the best summer ever!

Willie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Best Semester Ever

Absolutely loved my time studying with CET Florence. The classes were all interesting, yet challenging, and the staff was extremely helpful. All of the excursions that were organized by the program - from a trip to Rome to a basketball game with a local team to a hike in Chianti - were all some of the highlights of my time abroad. So many people have told me that their biggest regret in college was not studying abroad, and I'm so thankful to have gotten the opportunity to have studied abroad with CET Florence.

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Jonathan
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

2018 Semester Experience

The CET Florence program allowed me to have a very special study abroad experience. With their dedication to teaching combined with an excitement for traveling, CET provides students with one of the greatest educational experiences of all: experiential learning. This experiential learning came at times such as writing a paper on a local wine bar and getting to know a local business owner or the ability to travel on weekends (Thursday through Sunday) to new countries or taking class trips to see the management of leather factories. Not only are credits transferable and as stimulating as courses at some of the most prestigious US universities, but they are also taught in an environment that pushes students to look at the world around them in ways that you wouldn’t know to without some guidance. Professors are happy to discuss with you and lead you in the right direction in understanding cultural differences, how to tackle important shocks, and even where the best gelato shop in town can be found. I will take both the skills and the new appreciation of leisure time that CET helped instill in me far into the future. Furthermore, the fact that CET is a smaller institution in Florence, creates a warm CET community. Because of this, you are the staff’s number one priority and it is near impossible not to create wonderful relationships with all of the hardworking administrators.

What would you improve about this program?
The business model of CET as a whole, I believe, would greatly benefit from major restructuring. The way that the CET headquarters are set up in DC in the US with overarching policies for all CET programs makes for a bureaucratic atmosphere in which there is little room for accommodation. Because of what study abroad is in nature and the very many circumstances that have potential to arise, I think a major element to being a successful program is the ability to accommodate and alter regulations under extenuating circumstances. I saw these policies fall short first hand in terms of absences, housing, and professor leeway. On the flip side, these stringent policies cultivate a safe, by the book environment where you can know exactly what to expect by referencing the rules and guidelines of the program. The program could also improve by ensuring that ALL professors are suited well for the particular class they are teaching. Although most professors were wonderful I know of some cases of professors who were well versed and educated in the general subject they were teaching but not in the particular course. This may come as a result of difficulties in finding English speaking teachers for the necessary classes that the home institutions require.
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Tyler
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Wonderful Program in a Wonderful City

I had not traveled extensively before this semester, so I was pleasantly surprised at the level of ease involved in applying to and preparing for CET’s program in Florence. From the first movement, the experience was well-organized and simple. CET provided accurate and helpful information about classes, daily life, and travel. Upon arrival, the CET staff was helpful, friendly, and organized.

In terms of academics, this program was strenuous but not over-difficult. I took classes on the Medici, Renaissance Art, European Economy, Italian Politics, and Italian Language. By the end of the semester, I had a working knowledge about large portions of Florentine history, Italian culture, and local politics.

The city is full of art museums, gardens, and old palaces. As the center of the early Renaissance, Florence still houses many works from the 15th and 16th centuries in its churches and museums. There are many things and places to explore, and the city has a fairly vibrant nightlife for its relatively small size. The food in Florence is excellent but can be pricey in the more touristy parts of town. There are more than enough restaurants to allow you to try something new every day. There are many hidden gems located throughout the city, and exploration is rewarded.

Students were housed throughout the city, although our apartments were generally concentrated in well-trafficked areas close to the river and other landmarks. The apartments were pre-furnished, relatively spacious, and most had well-stocked kitchens. Mine came with heating and air conditioning, although this is not the norm in Italian apartments.

Although Florence’s airport is rather small, and flights can be pricey depending on the time of year, Florence is just a short train ride away from Pisa, Bologna, and Milan, which serve as hubs for European discount airlines. CET does not hold sessions on Friday, which was a major boon to weekend traveling.

Overall, I cannot recommend this experience enough. It was a fantastic time with a wonderful group of people.

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Shawn
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Semester

The staff at CET were absolutely incredible. They were extremely kind and always willing to help if I ever needed anything. They set you up with apartments close to the center of the city and organize a lot of fun trips and activities around Italy. I would really recommend it to those who want to have a great experience in Florence. The professors were all experienced as well and very friendly and helped you learn in a meaningful way. The location of CET itself is great as it is close to many sightseeing spots and close to the center of the city.

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Brett
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Solid Semester

Living in the city center of Florence was unlike any experience I have ever had as I am from a suburban town in Mee Jersey. I really felt like a Florentine for the time I was here and was immersed in the culture. The classes were very thorough and intrigueging and I would recommend it to everyone! The food is to die for if you are into that and the culture of Florence is much more laid back than I expected.

What would you improve about this program?
They could be more prepared for adversity with housing issues and medical leave.