My Semester Abroad in Italy: Sophie @ Università Roma Tre

Sophie Düsterhöft, student of Munich Business School, on the coast in Ostia during her semester abroad in Rome

Sophie Düsterhöft, a master’s student in International Marketing and Brand Management at Munich Business School (MBS), is currently spending her semester abroad in Rome at Università degli Studi Roma Tre. In the blog article, she reports on her experiences and gives useful tips on living in the Italian capital.

The choice to spend my semester abroad in Rome was easy. Rome is an impressive city, rich in history and in terms of art. So why go far away when there are so many great opportunities to spend your semester abroad in Europe?

Rome – a city with a special charm

When I arrived in Rome, the city immediately captivated me: narrow alleys everywhere, lined with small cafes, and walls of houses overgrown with ivy. In addition, all the sights of the city, such as the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, the Circus Maximus, the Pantheon or even the Vatican, which proudly show what a historical heritage this city has to offer.

Apart from that, the Italian capital also offers a variety of culinary delights: whether you stroll through the city center and enjoy an Aperol and a plate of pasta in a restaurant, get a fresh panini at one of the small stores, order a tiramisu with an espresso or try out the delicacies of the small stalls at the traditional “mercati” (= markets) – really everyone will find something here!

When heading further and away from the hustle and bustle of the Colosseum and the Circus Maximus, you will reach the other side of the Tiber, where the district of Trastevere is located. This trendy bohemian neighborhood is known for its traditional yet innovative trattorie, craft beer bars and artisan stores.

One last tip I absolutely have to share is that you have the option of taking public transport directly to Rome’s city beach – Ostia. On the way, I recommend making a stop at Ostia Antica, which used to be the port city of the Romans and, next to Pompeii, it is one of the best preserved ruined cities in the world.

For the evening, Rome also offers a varied nightlife, where you can choose between numerous bars. Particularly attractive is the concept of “aperitivo”, which means that you get a drink like an Aperol Spritz and a small plate of food for little money.

Living in Rome during the semester abroad

Regarding the housing situation, I can personally recommend looking for a room or an apartment near the MBS partner university Università Roma Tre. Therefore, I would suggest you choose the district Ostiense for living. Ostiense is very well connected and there is a metro line that goes directly to the main station via the Colosseum and Circus Maximus, so you are quickly in the city center. In addition, from the stop Basilica San Paolo also runs the direct connection to Ostia.

The traditional student district of Rome, San Lorenzo, is located to the east near the main train station Termini. Here you will find many bars and clubs and a relaxed atmosphere. San Lorenzo is also well connected by train and bus, from Ostiense it takes about 30 minutes.

Streets in Rome
Semester abroad in Rome: Colosseum

Studying at Università degli Studi Roma Tre

Università Roma Tre is one of the four state universities in Rome. According to its name, it is the third university in the capital chronologically by year of foundation. The university has several campuses distributed in Ostiense and throughout the city, but the main campus is located in Ostiense near the metro station Basilica San Paolo (which, by the way, is the second largest basilica in Rome).

The semester at Università Roma Tre starts on October 1 and as a welcome there is a welcome session, which was held digitally this year. The lecture period continues into December, followed by the exam period in January and February. Depending on your choice of courses, you may not have to take a final exam at the end of the semester, but instead receive a grade based on the submissions made during the semester, as it was the case for me. The workload in the courses is moderate and, just like at MBS, accompanied by group work. Before starting your semester abroad at Università Roma Tre, it is advisable to get an overview of the possible courses to choose from and the course times, as some are only offered either in the first semester or in the second semester. The course selection for English-speaking students is not too extensive, but I think there are still some interesting subject options among them. For example, I chose courses with a sustainable and technological approach around design thinking.

If you have any questions regarding the enrollment process, it is important to know that all inquiries are handled through the university portal helpdesk. If you have further questions that go into more detail, you can also contact your Erasmus supervisor, but note that once you have decided to spend your semester abroad in Italy, a certain amount of patience is required ;-).

My final conclusion on the semester abroad

I can decently recommend you spending your semester abroad in Rome! The city is a must-see and should be on every bucket list. Not only the city of Rome, but also Italy as a whole is a beautiful and diverse country and we how lucky are we that it is only a stone’s throw away from our study location?! I had a very great time in Rome, which shaped me, challenged me, and made me develop myself. I am very happy that Munich Business School gave me the opportunity to spend my semester aboard in this city.

The author is responsible for the content and form of the article.

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