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Study Abroad Student Trip Report: Paulina Urbanowicz

Ciao everyone! My name is Paulina Urbanowicz, and I am a rising senior in industrial engineering. I recently had the opportunity to travel abroad in Florence, Italy during the May mini-term. I had the privilege to take Applied Human Factors and Art (IE 493) with 11 of my fellow IE classmates. Although this was a short program, the memories that were made will last a lifetime.

Group photo with Paulina Urbanowicz

I loved the structure of our class because we were able to learn so much through various tours, museums, business visits, and historical sites. Each day was filled with these immersions, and it was amazing to listen and take in all the information that was passed on to us. From the Uffizi to the Accademia to the Bargello, each museum had breathtaking pieces of art. Learning about the artwork and the designs throughout various periods in history allowed me to gain a deeper appreciation and understanding. It was unique to look at the art from a human factors perspective and the way knowledge was passed on and evolved over the years. I greatly enjoyed each of the business visits as the products from these businesses were unique to the owners, and their focus is on the customer. It was very interesting to hear their point of view and the passion that they have for continuing their businesses. Some of my favorite memories in Florence are from the Ponte Vecchio, Piazzale Michelangelo, and Piazza del Duomo. I will never forget turning the corner and seeing the Duomo for the first time, it is incredible!

Urbanowicz standing in front of the Duomo

As a class, we traveled to Rome for three days and were able to visit the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Catacombs, Trevi Fountain, Vatican Museums, and were mentioned as a group at the audience with the Pope! Aside from the learning and visits for the class during the week, on the weekends I was able to travel to some of the nearby cities. I had the opportunity to visit Lucca, Pisa, Cinque Terre, Siena, Bologna, and Venice. Each city was so different, but they were all beautiful!

Buildings on a hill in Italy

Having the opportunity to study abroad in Italy was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity that I will cherish forever. I am thankful for Professor Knight and all the effort that went into planning and creating a successful course. Each day was a new adventure for our group, and through our experiences we were able to immerse ourselves in the culture. So grateful to have made memories with such a wonderful group!