Italy is one of the most influential hubs of Western civilization, and its cultural heritage includes many of the most significant and memorable events in European history. It saw the rise and fall of the Roman Empire, played a pivotal role in the birth of Christianity, and sparked the Renaissance. Italy’s long list of poets, painters, sculptors, architects, composers, singers, writers, and inventors have had a lasting influence on the development of Western civilization. Its culture is extraordinary rich and is recognized and celebrated around the world, and not surprisingly Italy is home to about fifty percent of UNESCO world heritage sites.
However, a rich cultural history is not all that Italy has to offer. The innate friendliness of the Italian people, their appreciation for the moment, their love affair with food, wine, good company and beauty in all its forms, and their obsessive desire to strive for excellence in whatever they do are also reasons people are drawn to the Italian mentality and way of life.
Knowledge of another language and culture in general is important, but Italian language and culture in particular is very valuable. It can open the doors to exciting career opportunities in almost every kind of business, industry, and profession.
On one hand, Italian is the language of culture. Fluency means access to a literary legacy of fundamental importance for the history of Europe as well as access to an invaluable body of works in the humanities. It is essential for a complete understanding of European literature, philosophy, political thought, music, art, opera, theater, and cinema.
On the other hand, Italy has one of the most technically advanced and industrialized economies in the world. It exports many high quality products, services, and technologies across its borders and thus bilingualism is a highly sought skill by Italian employers.
By speaking Italian, discovering Italy and its hospitable people, artistic cities, and natural beauty becomes a pleasure. In addition, immersion in a foreign culture can open whole new avenues of self-exploration and personal growth. Broaden your horizons by studying Italian!
For more information about the Italian program, contact Prof. Cinzia Dragoni Holt, Rayzor Hall 219.