NOTE: Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. If accepted to this program, the final date to commit to or decline participation is October 15.
NOTE: Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. If accepted to this program, the final date to commit to or decline participation is March 15.
NOTE: Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. If accepted to this program, the final date to commit to or decline participation is April 15.
** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Art, Art - Art History, Art - Studio Art, Communications, Cultural Studies, Drama, European Studies, Film Studies, Foreign Affairs, History, Italian, Media Studies, Other Languages & Literatures, Political Science, Sociology
UVA in Italy: Siena
(in affiliation with CET)
UVA in Italy: Siena is offered through the partnership of University of Virginia and CET Academic Programs.
Siena offers an ideal setting to dive into the Italian culture and lifestyle, while still being close to the rest of Europe. You will be uniquely immersed in contemporary Tuscan life while surrounded by the rich history of this medieval city. A variety of challenging courses in Italian language and literature, economics, politics, and art take you out of the classroom and into the streets and museums of Siena, Florence, and more distant cities.
“CET Siena has been my favorite experience of college so far. If you are looking to have the opportunity to immerse yourself in a smaller Italian city, this is the program for you. All of the teachers and staff of CET are some of the most helpful people I have met. It is clear that they care about the students and want them to succeed.” – Owen Little, Spring 2018
– Video produced by Stefania Mazza, Spring 2015
Remember that you must apply through both the International Studies Office and CET Academic Programs.
A medieval city located an hour south of Florence, Siena offers an ideal location to engage with Italy's rich artistic and cultural legacy. Don’t let its size fool you—Siena’s small-town feel is exactly what makes this thriving university city a crowd favorite. Alumni rave about its energy and sense of community that invite you to participate in Italian life as soon as your feet touch the ground. Converse with friendly locals in Italian and discover the deep connection residents have to the city and their contrada (districts with origins dating back to medieval times). Bump into your neighbors at the open-air market. Stroll down winding brick alleyways. Enjoy a plate of pici al cinghiale (pasta with wild boar sauce). Do homework overlooking il Campo.
Classes are taught at the CET Center. The Center houses classrooms and the administrative office, and provides computers, wireless internet, and a variety of local culture and travel resources.
The curriculum of UVA in Italy: Siena provides a well-rounded program for students who love Italy. Study as much Italian language as you like; choose from a wide variety of electives in Italian Literature, Cinema, Women, Gender and Sexuality, Art History, Media Studies and beyond; and take a core course designed to provide the skills and theory behind intercultural communication.
CET faculty are more than just experts in their subject areas…they’re all about learning in action. For your classes, you’ll interview students at the library, or locals at a café. Check out an event with your host family, then report about it in class. Visit a contrada to learn about the Palio horserace. Head to Florence to see Michelangelo’s David, Artemisia Gentileschi's artwork at the Uffizi Gallery, and the Medici chapels. In the words of one former student, “At least once a week, I found myself outside the classroom in some part of Siena, Tuscany, or even Southern Italy, with a professor explaining the context of where we were.”
Language courses are offered at all levels. Upon arrival, you will complete a language assessment to determine course enrollment. Advanced language students may take courses taught in Italian.
Non-language courses are requested in the application and enrollments are finalized prior to arrival in Siena.
Semester: Enroll in one or two semester’s worth of Italian language; Intercultural Communication: Italy in Sienese and Sicilian Contexts (which includes a Traveling Seminar to Sicily); and two or three area studies courses.
Summer: During the eight-week summer program, take Italian language and one area studies course. Excursions and class trips are in and around Tuscany.
This program offers you the chance to earn direct UVA credit, which works exactly the same way whether you earn it in Charlottesville or abroad. Direct credit factors into your GPA and letter grades will be listed on your UVA transcript.
Visit the CET website for a full list of courses and syllabi.
CET academic staff ensure that you and your classes are a good fit. They direct the curriculum, manage the faculty, and monitor courses. Do you have particular learning needs? Do you need advice for keeping up with the class pace? The academic staff is there to help.
CET programming staff help you get the most out of the program. They handle housing, excursions, and day-to-day logistics, and are trained in emergency prevention and management. Got an idea for an activity? Need to see a doctor? Just want someone to talk to? Programming staff are your best resource.
CET faculty are hired in close collaboration with the University of Virginia Siena Curriculum Oversight Committee. This ensures that the quality of instruction in Siena is on par with what you’re accustomed to on Grounds.
UVA professor Francesca Calamita is the Program Director of UVA in Siena and guides the academic development of the program; she is also a member of the CET Italy Programs Advisory Board.
Accommodation and Meals
You may choose to live in a homestay or an apartment in Siena. See CET’s website for more information.
Homestay: Homestays provide a wonderful opportunity for immersion into the daily lives and diverse make-up of contemporary Italian families. This option is available for students at all language levels, though you should be prepared to use your developing speaking skills. Breakfast and dinner are provided daily. This arrangement does require an additional fee; contact CET for information.
Apartment: Live together with Italian housemates and fellow CET students in centrally located apartments. This arrangement allows for a lively exchange of culture and views, and the opportunity to immerse yourself in Italian language. You may use their apartment kitchens or choose to eat at a wide array of local cafes and restaurants.
The University of Virginia believes in providing reasonable accommodations for students with documented disabilities on an individual and flexible basis. If you believe that you would require adjustments in order to fully participate in this program, please contact the Student Disability Access Center at 434-243-5180 as early as possible in order to begin this dialogue.
Passport and Visa
All participants will need a valid passport in order to participate in the program. Students must ensure that their passport is valid at least six months past the program return date. US passport holders will need a visa to participate in this program. The ISO will assist with the visa application process. International students should meet with their International Student Advisor in the International Studies Office as part of the application process.
Health and Safety Information
All students considering Education Abroad should consult the Students Abroad section of the U.S. Department of State’s web-based travel resources and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Traveler’s Health web resources to research health, safety, and security conditions; visa requirements; immunization requirements; and recommendations on staying healthy and safe in their target destination(s). Students should also carefully review the UVA Education Abroad Health & Safety Abroad web page. Parents and guardians are strongly advised to review all of these resources, as well. UVA students and visiting students enrolled in UVA Education Abroad programs are subject to the University of Virginia’s Policy on Student International Travel.