Italian Studies Program

Stonehill's Italian Studies program, offered as a major in combination with another language and as a minor on its own, goes far beyond simply learning a language. It’s a chance to immerse yourself in the the culture of Italy.


“Pursuing a minor in Italian Studies broadened my intellectual and cultural experience while at Stonehill.”

- Kelly Morrone ’13 (right), who spent a semester studying and interning in Florence, Italy

Students at Stonehill College can choose Italian as a primary or secondary focus and combine it with another of the languages taught in the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures.

If you’re majoring in International Studies or Business Administration, the Italian Studies minor is an opportunity to better understand Italy's people through work and study abroad in three of Italy’s cosmopolitan treasures: Florence, Rome and Perugia.

Built Around Your Needs & Interests

Because of Stonehill’s size and its exclusive focus on undergraduates, students in the Italian Studies Program enjoy extensive access to faculty. In addition to the courses offered in the course catalog, many students take advantage of Directed Studies, which enable them to pursue a specific area of interest and inquiry. Examples of Directed Studies offered include surveys of Italian literature, Italian poetry, Italian women-writers and many others.

The minor in Italian Studies is an interdisciplinary minor and requires the completion of six courses determined in consultation with the departmental minor advisor. Students can take classes in Italian as well as approved courses in other disciplines such as Art History, History, and American Studies. Students minoring in Italian Studies are required to take at least four courses on campus and may get approval to complete the final two courses while studying abroad. See program requirements.

Beginning with Intermediate Italian, the language instruction students receive employs a variety of communicative strategies designed to achieve proficiency. These include:

  • Conversation tables to practice speaking Italian with other students and native speakers
  • Film showings, organized by the Italian club
  • Discussions of contemporary life and customs
  • Cultural events posted on the Italian Studies Facebook page
  • Technology gets you there faster

In addition to classroom instruction and the other tools listed above, you are also aided by Quia, an interactive language lab that allows you to work online outside class. All lectures in the program are technology-enhanced.

Study Abroad Credit

All minors in the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures are urged to spend a semester abroad in an approved international program of study or in one of the international internships sponsored by Stonehill College. Students should contact Professor Valentini with questions about which courses to take abroad and what can be counted towards the minor. Generally, up to two such courses can be approved and transferred for credit.

Interning in Florence

The Italian Studies program at Stonehill maintains a relationship with the American Institute For Foreign Study that allows students to participate in a part-time internship while in Florence. Students who intern in Florence are connected with employers that are relevant to their area of study and their language competence.

While in Florence, Stonehill students attend the renowned Instituto Lorenzo de Medici, taking two courses of their choosing relevant to Italian Studies (focusing on such topics as language, history, art, anthropology and many others). Students also complete work toward their respective majors.

Most classes take place in beautiful and historic buildings and students are accommodated in centrally located apartments, some of which afford breathtaking views of the Duomo, Florence’s storied basilica. It’s an enriching and exciting experience that will immerse you in the culture of Italy and provide a unique opportunity for personal growth.

Stonehill Italian Club

This student-run organization, established in 2011, helps create a sense of community on campus for those with Italian heritage as well as those who simply love Italy, its language and culture. The club meets at least once a month. Each year it plans a schedule of events that can include guest speakers, shows Italian movies and other events.

Program Contact Info

Daria Valentini
Professor of Italian
Italian Studies Program Director
Office: Duffy Academic Center 254
Phone: 508-565-1254