College of Rhode Island
In our participants' words ....
"The Program in Italy was the trip of a
lifetime. From visiting the Vatican City to the Coliseum, from Villa d'Este to Palazzo Farnese, from Orvieto
to Spoleto, Perugia and Assisi, the trip was spectacular. I was always
learning, my questions were always answered and I used the knowledge I
gained in class every day... From simple phrases of description and
explanation, I quickly learned to appreciate the beauty of the Italian
language and its musical tones... From the start of my lesson I fell in
love with the Italian language and dedicated myself to using as
much as my vocabulary and imagination would allow."
"The visits supplied very adequate information on the cultural and
historical aspects. Every place we went to was full of interesting facts
and history. All of our guides were very helpful and informative.
Could not have been better! The cooking class well exceeded my
expectations on every level".
"My trip to Italy did indeed prove to be a feast for the eyes, body
and soul. It was a special gift and a blessing to have been privileged
in this lifetime to experience it. I was doubly blessed to have been
able to share all of it with my two young daughters."
||"This program has made me think about the value of travel and even
though it can be costly the experiences are priceless. I think travel
will be a priority in my life. I also am glad to realize that I am open
minded and willing to try new things ... This trip has really made me
appreciate life and opportunities to make the most of it! Grazie!"
Natalia Di Fusco, 2009
"This program provided a
completely fulfilling experience for me. I felt it to be completely
diverse in offering so many different aspects of Italian culture. Prof.
Mansella was wonderful in providing a wealth of information and
"The program was extremely
fulfilling! The most attractive aspect was the cultural excursions and seeing all
the amazing artwork and Italian life. I would recommend the program to
everyone and the gelato!"
||"The Italian courses were well organized given the
fact that students of varying levels of
knowledge of Italian were in class together. Nevertheless, the
Professor's sensitivity to addressing each individual's needs along with
her commitment to the study of Italian was remarkable. Classes
absolutely met my expectations. But it is important to note that besides
the actual classroom experience, the ongoing experience of living in
Italy and dealing with everyday life situations where one was constantly
afforded the opportunity to use the Italian language was of inestimable
Charles Mansolillo, 2008
"Everything was effective ... the class presentations, guest speakers
and lectures. The whole trip was informative and well planned."
Frank Capasso, 2008
Chandra Rodrigues, 2008
||"Dear Prof. Mansella,
I wish there was a way to tell you how
much this trip and experience has meant
"In every way the classes exceeded
expectations. Classes were held formally in the hotel conference room
and then after break, continued at Montanucci's over espressos. This was
particularly advantageous to the learning process, in that we were among
natives, living like natives, and learning on the go. Informal
instruction was conducted anywhere and everywhere on excursions as Prof.
Mansella related what we were doing and seeing at any given time to the
Italian language, culture and history."
"Dear Professor Mansella,
Your wonderful, caring spirit, patience and expertise of the language and culture of the Italian people has enabled me to have a trip that brought back to my roots. I have been touched emotionally and spiritually. Learning the language brings back wonderful memories of my parents, grandparents and so many others ...."
Nicolette Ciano, 2007
"After the first week, not only were some of us speaking in Italian to
shopkeepers, waiters and others, but we felt comfortable chatting up
with people in the streets and wherever we happened to go."
Mille grazie per tutto il tuo
lavoro per fare questo viaggio il piu` memorabile che io abbia avuto!
Veramente e` stato un piacere partecipare con tutte le persone nel
gruppo, con Concetta, Chiara
e specialmente con te - una persona professionale che aiuta tutti. Sempre tieni in mente
di fare il bene per gli altri.
Spero di contribuire al tuo programma in qualunque modo che possa. Tante
belle cose e cari saluti e auguri per tutto. Un abbraccio forte,"
"Working with a top chef, in a professional kitchen;
guided by our incredible, passionate, dedicate founder; nestled
in an Italian hamlet with good people. Paradise.
I was blessed with a true
understanding of the Italian culinary tradition as well as immersed in the rich
culture that created it."
“The program surpassed all my expectations.
Students came out of the on-site learning experience
with a great desire to continue on. More than one trip is required if
the desire to learn is greater than just curiosity."
"Learning a foreign language is a lot of fun. It helps us to understand each other better and gives us the confidence and strength to succeed in a world that is getting smaller and smaller."
Julie Santos, 2005
"Fabulous experience at Bagnoregio, the
dell'oca e Sagra degli
gnocchi", and the play at Ferento. Talking with the
people there was
invaluable in understanding the culture."
"Of course, along the pastoral roads to everywhere are fields and fields
of girasoli (sunflowers). Their name means turning around the sun—gira
(turn around), sole (sun). These are the floral hallmark of Umbria and
Tuscany. On a cloudy day their heads droop down toward the earth as if
they’re crying. On sunny days, they perk up reaching for their
brilliant yellow namesake in the bluest of skies having a party as they
dance and sway to the music of the venticello (breezes). Of course,
the best olive oil and wines come from the vineyards and olive groves
nestled in the Umbrian and Tuscan hills. We see these as we travel to
our destinations, along with monasteries and palatial villas (gotta have
one!). Even the dogs here are adorable, calm and well-tempered.
They’re so smart: they understand Italian!"
" It was the most fulfilling experience! Being
immersed in the life of an Italian town truly enhanced the learning
process. The course work motivated me to do more, explore more, and get
more involved with local people, engaging them in conversation, ordering
"It was wonderful experiencing the culture of Orvieto as someone
who is part of the city, not just a tourist...that was how Prof.
the class. She wanted the classroom to be outside of the classroom."
||"The immersion of the educational process with the
an incredible learning environment… Students and professors
studying together created an immeasurable bonding experience,
and Prof. Mansella's unselfish extension of her time and effort
Prof. Barbara Sepe Reall, 2003
"We had the utmost integrity as Americans in a foreign
country, and that was definitely Prof. Mansella's leadership and influence, that was her
vision of what it should be like and it definitely met those expectations."
||"I appreciate the flexibility of the conversational
An enormous amount of vocabulary, grammar and cultural
was covered in a very short time. The heritage class
opened many new avenues of
knowledge. It gave me a foundation
for further independent exploration of
Italian culture and literature….The excursions to various towns and
social/cultural activities were
very stimulating and informative: Etruscan art
at Tarquinia, the
development of Middle Ages, Renaissance art through visits to
Assisi, Perugia, Florence, Rome. Our guide was terrific in presenting
connections and relationships especially between art, literature
Stephanie Trudeau, 2003
"I would encourage anyone thinking about enrolling in
to do so. It's such a unique experience in that not only would
learn the Italian language and culture, but you will be able to
experience via the many colorful and worthwhile
excursions included as part of
"Classes exceeded my expectations, due entirely to their
logic and structure. I feel much more comfortable conversing in
and my knowledge of Italian culture is certainly richer… Excursions
cultural activities exceeded my expectations! My three weeks in Italy with
CCRI were the next best thing to living, eating, and talking-to and with an
Italian family in Italy. I could not ask for more."
"The instruction's presentations were excellent. The
were perfect selections…Absolutely terrific course… In every
respect this is an outstanding program that provides a rich experience
teaching Italian conversation enriched with splendid trips to great