Study for a semester in Florence, Italy!

Florence, home of the Pasadena City College Semester in Italy, lies as a jewel in the heart of Tuscany. Here, in the center of Italy, you will walk in the footsteps of Michelangelo, Fra Angelico, Leonardo da Vinci, Donatello, Botticelli, Brunelleschi, Petrarch and Dante.

You will feel the very presence of these painters, philosophers, poets, architects, sculptors, and writers - giants of the Italian Renaissance, which had its beginnings here in Florence and its environs.

Daily you will walk through the narrow, hand-hewn streets between the magnificent medieval and renaissance architecture, which was designed by these geniuses. Their sculptures adorn outside walls and stand in the loggias of their grand piazzas. The many museums are treasure troves of beauty. You will learn the ways of Italian living from the lively and intellectual Florentines as you rub elbows with them in small “caffe” bars and enjoy the local cappuccino and panini.

Program Dates

Aug 26 - Dec 1, 2019                                  

  • August 26 - September 5: program starts at PCC
  • September 7 - December 1: program continues in Florence

Program Fee

$8,590 Price based on 20 students. Excludes airline taxes & PCC tuition.

Info Sessions

Meet the faculty & learn more about the program at an Information Session!

Noon in C-310:
  • March 5 & 21
  • April 2 & 25
  • May 7 & 23
  • June 3
6:00 pm in C-310:
  • March 5
  • April 2
  • May 7
  • June 3

Program Dates

  • August 26 - September 5: program starts at PCC 
  • September 6: Group flight departs U.S. for Italy
  • September 7: Arrive in Florence, transfer to accommodations
  • September 8: Orientation tour
  • October 18 - 27: Fall Break
  • December 1: End of program. Group flight departs Florence for the U.S.

Program Fees

$8,590 (Based on a minimum enrollment of 20 students)

Program Fee Includes:

  • Roundtrip airfare (LAX to FLR) & transfers
  • Housing in furnished, self-catering, apartments within the historic center of Florence
  • Welcome & Farewell Dinners
  • Guided city tour of Florence
  • Guided visits to select historical sites and museums in Florence & Rome
  • Full-day excursion to Siena & San Gimignano
  • 3 day/2 night excursion to Rome
  • Access to on-site Student Center and the services of experienced Student Advisors
  • On-site faculty, student support staff, and 24-hour emergency contact service
  • Free wireless internet access at teaching site and in apartments
  • Accident and illness insurance
  • Liability insurance

Program fee does not include:

  • Mandatory U.S. government and airline-imposed departure taxes, fees and fuel surcharges of $489 (subject to change)
  • Refundable housing damage deposit ($250)
  • Optional meal plan ($425) consisting of 25 vouchers for use at lunch or dinner in selected Florence eateries
  • Optional medical insurance upgrade ($65) and optional personal effects coverage ($95)
  • Passport and visa fees, if applicable
  • PCC course registration fees
  • Textbooks
  • Personal expenses
Item: Fee: Deadline:
Enrollment Deposit $450.00 Due immediately upon acceptance into program
Balance of Fees $8,140.00 July 12, 2019
Airline Taxes (estimate) $489.00 July 12, 2019
Housing Damage Deposit (refundable) $250.00 July 12, 2019
Total $9,329.00  
Optional Upgrades: Fee: Deadline:
Meal Plan $425.00 Before departure
Medical Insurance Upgrade $65.00 July 12, 2019
Personal Effects Coverage $90.00 July 12, 2019

Airfare for student participants is offered on a space-available basis. Airline tickets cannot be arranged for students applying after Thursday, June 13, 2019. Land-only packages, without airfare, may be offered to students accepted into the program after this date.

All students must submit a $450 deposit upon acceptance into the program and when completing the online enrollment form. Subsequent payments may be made by check or credit card. Checks should be made payable to “AIFS.” You may also use American Express, MasterCard or Visa.

Please note: A $35 returned check fee will be charged on all checks returned by the bank for insufficient funds.

Financial Aid Students

Financial Aid students are responsible for paying, by July 12, 2019, the airfare ($595), airline taxes ($489 – subject to change), a $600 program reservation deposit, and any remaining balance that will not be covered by aid.

AIFS Transportation Package

Tickets purchased from AIFS are exclusively on scheduled airlines (not charters). They are not endorsable to another carrier. Flights are not necessarily direct or non-stop, and frequent flyer miles are not applicable. The AIFS Transportation Package includes round-trip ground transportation from the airport in Italy to your accommodations on the regularly scheduled program dates. AIFS will book flights on the dates indicated on this application only.

Participants wishing to cancel from the flight must notify AIFS in writing by Friday, July 12, 2019. Cancellation penalties will apply. Tickets are non-refundable after this date.

AIFS Airfare Regulations

Return must be to original U.S. departure point. Tickets are subject to airline availability. No refunds are available for any unused portion of ticket. Tickets cannot be rerouted, and stopovers are not permitted. Once in Italy participants may be able to change their return date, but only if that date is available and in the same class of service in which the ticket was booked. Only the ticketing agent can provide this information. Participants are subject to agency and airline-imposed change fees and space availability. Group round-trip ground transportation to and from the airport in Italy is on the regularly scheduled program dates only.

A minimum of 10 participants must take the AIFS flight for it to be offered.

Course Offerings

Participants must enroll in a minimum of 12 units from the following program courses:

Course No. Course Name Units
ANTH 002 Cultural Anthropology  3
ANTH 003 Introduction to Archaeology  3
ANTH 004 Anthropology of Religion, Magic & Witchcraft  3
ART 001A History of Western Art: Prehistoric to Medieval  3
ART 001B History of Western Art: Renaissance to Present  3
ART 004C History of European Renaissance & Baroque Art
ITAL 001-004             
Elementary or Intermediate Italian  5

*All courses are CSU/UC transferable*Honors Program credit for those who qualify

ANTH 002 Cultural Anthropology: Anthropologists study what it means to be human. In this class we will investigate human culture, with an emphasis on all things Italian - identity, language, family, food, traditions, and more. Understanding the different perspectives and experiences across the world’s cultures is the goal of Cultural Anthropology. Using Florence as our classroom, we will immerse ourselves in the Italian lifestyle and use our personal experiences and first-hand observations to inform our relativistic understanding of Italian culture.

ANTH 003 Introduction to Archaeology: Archaeology is the study of the human past through the analysis of sites and artifacts. Using the Italian archaeological record as a case study, we will explore some of the most fascinating ancient cultures and archaeological sites in the region. Learn about the mysterious Etruscans, from which "Tuscany" inherited its name, and the emergence of the early Roman state. The class will be enhanced by visits to nearby Etruscan archaeological sites and tombs, to the forum and colosseum whilst in Rome, and to visits to local museums with Etruscan and Roman antiquities.

ANTH 004: Anthropology of Religion, Magic & Witchcraft: This class will explore the expression of religion as an element of human culture. Special attention will be paid to religious universals and the many characteristics that all religions share. Using Italy as a case study, we will also explore elements of religious expression in the region through time - from Etruscan mythology and the role of magic & divination in ancient Rome, to traditional religious-based healing practices and the rise of the Vatican as a religiopolitical institution.

ART 001A  History of Western Art – Prehistoric through Medieval: This class links directly to the on-site study of the ancient, classical and medieval civilizations of the Italian peninsula. Student learning is enhanced through local visits in Florence (Duomo, Baptistry, San Miniato al Monte, Santa Croce, etc.), Siena (Piazza del Campo, Palazzo Pubblico, Siena Cathedral), and Rome (Roman Fora, the Colosseum, the Pantheon). Optional visits to cities such as Arezzo (medieval churches and archaeological museum), Bologna (University, medieval towers) and Lucca (intact urban wall) – all a short distance from Florence – further enrich students’ appreciation and understanding of these places and their histories.

ART 001B History of Western Art – Renaissance to Present: This course is an excellent choice for those looking to satisfy a requirement for a certificate/major/transfer, or simply students with an interest in European art from this period. In-class and site discussion will focus on the development of European art and architecture from the Renaissance to the rise of Modernism in the 19th and 20th centuries. Local examples of such work we’re likely to encounter include the painting collections of the Uffizi, the Palazzo Strozzi, and Michelangelo’s David in the Accademia. Architectural sites include Rome’s late 19th century Vittorio Emanuele monument, Florence’s 1930s train station at Santa Maria Novella, and American architect Richard Meier’s recent projects for the Art Pacis Museum, in Rome.

ART 004C History of European Renaissance and Baroque Art: The Italy edition of the ART 004C provides majors and non-majors alike with a more comprehensive experience of Italian art and architecture from the periods for which Italy – and certainly Florence and Rome – are best known, emulated and loved: The Renaissance and the Baroque. Florence is indeed the “capital” of the Early Renaissance, while Rome is without rival with respect to its many examples of High Renaissance and Baroque art and architecture. Our visit to Rome and the Vatican allows students to witness that signal monument of the Baroque period, the Basilica of St. Peter (including Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel), Bernini’s Ecstasy of St. Teresa at Santa Maria della Vittoria, and the Borromini Church of San Carlo, along with many other masterworks of the Roman Baroque.

Program Faculty

Joseph futtner

Dean & Associate Professor, Visual Arts & Media Studies

Joseph Futtner is dean of the Visual Arts and Media Studies division and an associate professor at Pasadena City College. He had the great privilege of participating in PCC’s Florence study abroad programs in 2007 and 2010 and is delighted to be part of the 2019 program.

Dean Futtner considers Florence his spiritual home and is a proud citizen of both the EU and the US. An honors graduate in art history from the University of Hartford, he earned graduate degrees at Hunter College and the City University of New York Graduate Center. He has taught art history surveys and classes in Medieval art, Renaissance and Baroque art, contemporary art and architectural history. Past teaching assignments include the School of Visual Arts, Hunter College, the State University of Minnesota, New York University, the Fashion Institute of Technology, and Glendale College.

In Italy, Dean Futtner will be teaching ART 001A (History of Western Art - Prehistoric through Medieval), ART 001B (History of Art - Renaissance through Modern) and ART 004C (History of European Renaissance and Baroque Art), classes selected to take advantage of the many opportunities for study in Florence and elsewhere in Italy.


Professor of Anthropology & Study Abroad Coordinator

Andrea Murray is a professor in the Social Sciences Division at Pasadena City College, where she has taught anthropology and archaeology courses for the past eleven years. Outside of the classroom she remains an active archaeologist and has conducted research in California, the American Southwest, Mexico, Central and South America, and Europe. Her research interests include archaeobotany, lithic and ceramic analysis, museum studies, archaeological curation, and public archaeology. 

Professor Murray first traveled to Europe as a college student and experienced the life-changing benefits of studying abroad first-hand. She has been an avid traveler ever since, with visits to more than 35 countries. Professor Murray has returned to Europe multiple times for research and exploration. Her last trip to Italy involved a rambling road trip through Tuscany and the remote south, with stops at medieval hill towns and castles, Etruscan tombs, ancient Roman villas and Greek temples, millennia-old frescoes, and pilgrimage shrines.

Professor Murray is thrilled to be returning to enchanting Florence with students. She looks forward to turning the city into a classroom and to actively engaging students in the anthropological study of Italian culture, religion, and archaeology through first-hand observations and field trips.

Meals & Accommodations

Accommodations in furnished, self-catering, apartments located within the historical center of Florence. You will stay in twin rooms with typically 4 to 6 PCC students sharing a two or three bedroom apartment. Apartments include kitchens for meal preparation, with cooking equipment, plates, glasses, and utensils. Linens will also be provided, although you should bring your own towels.

You will be invoiced for a $250 refundable security deposit in addition to the program fees.

Optional Meal Plan:

A package of 25 meal vouchers for use at lunch or dinner in selected eateries in Florence is available for an additional fee of $425.

Excursions & Activities

Orientation program upon arrival followed by a walking tour of Florence and a Welcome Dinner.

(Three days/Two nights) In Rome, there is visible evidence of the two great empires of the western world: the Roman Empire and the Christian Church. Home of the Roman Forum and the Coliseum, St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican, history comes alive as you stroll through the piazzas of Italy’s ancient capital. 

Your time here will include a guided sightseeing tour, entrance to the Roman Forum and the Coliseum, and a guided tour of the Vatican museums. Round-trip transportation, twin-room hotel accommodations, and breakfast are included.

Guided day-trip to the enchanting Tuscan towns of Siena, famous for its Palio horse race, and San Gimignano, the medieval city of beautiful towers. Round-trip transportation and local guide included.

Use your free weekends to travel around Italy and to Europe’s great cities. Local staff will assist you in choosing destinations and transportation. Student favorites include Rome, Venice, Milan, Paris, Amsterdam, Dublin and Berlin. The program will have a Fall Break from October 18 - 27. This is a great time to explore!

Additional activities will be available in Florence, either at no additional cost or for a subsidized fee. Activities may include cooking classes, wine-tastings, concerts, and more!

The Italian American Scholarship Fund provides awards and scholarships for the study of Italian to PCC students. To qualify for this scholarship, you must have completed an Italian language course at Pasadena City College. Qualified students are invited to apply to support their Florence program costs. $1,000 award.

Visit to learn more about the scholarship.

To begin your application, go to and log-in with your LancerPoint credentials.

Application Period: April 8 - June 10, 2019

Financial Aid may be available to those who qualify. Grants, loans, and scholarships may be used to pay program fees.

Apply immediately. You should allow up to eight weeks for your financial aid request to be processed.

More About Financial Aid options at PCC

Apply to Study in Florence!

We are now accepting applications for the Florence 2019 program! Applications submitted on or before May 1 will be given priority. Interviews begin in April. Apply now! 

To be eligible for the program, you must be at least 18 years old on the date of departure. All adult students and varied educational backgrounds are welcome! You do not need to be a current PCC student to join the program.

Apply Now
More Information

Contact Professor Andrea Murray, Study Abroad Coordinator

  • (626) 585-3365
  • V-203
  • Working remotely from Italy during the Fall 2019 semester. Please send all inquiries to me by email at On-campus office hours will resume in the spring.