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FAQs

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What documents do I need to travel to Italy?

A valid passport is required for you to enter and leave the US and other countries. You should apply for a passport as soon as possible if you do not already have one. Approximately 6-8 weeks are needed for processing time, but be aware that the process may take longer, particularly during peak travel times. Complete information on application forms and how to receive a passport is available online at www.travel.state.gov. If you already have a passport, please check that it has not expired and that it will remain valid for at least 6 months before your planned return to the US. PLEASE NOTE: This information applies to US passports only. If you hold a passport from a different country, you will need to find information applicable to that region as policies and protocol differ.

Do I have to apply for a Visa?

All students applying for our semester programs – unless they have a European passport – have to apply for a Study Visa. Please check the Visa section of our website for more information.

PLEASE NOTE: This information applies to US passports only. If you hold a passport from a different country, you will need to find information applicable to that region as policies and protocol differ.

Where can I buy a plane ticket?

To get an idea about prices you could use Skyscanner, a global metasearch engine that compares flight costs.

Student travel agencies: Students can often take advantage of lower fares through agencies that cater exclusively to students. Although the fares are cheaper, these tickets tend to have restrictions.

STA Travel (www.statravel.com) and Student Universe (www.studentuniverse.com) are two very large student travel agencies that offer discounts to students. You must have an International Student Identity Card (they also sell ISICs) to purchase a reduced-rate ticket, but non-discounted tickets are available to anyone.

Please note that you can also purchase tickets from other local travel agents and consolidators. Keep in mind that most cheap tickets often have restrictions and you may encounter difficulty in changing your flight dates or time.

What time should I plan to arrive on Campus on arrival day?

No matter what your travel arrangements are, students need to arrive at the Accademia no later than 5:00 pm on arrival day.

 

Is there any kind of transportation provided by the Accademia dell’Arte on arrival day?

Accademia dell’Arte will provide airport pick up from the Florence (FLR) airport on arrival day only for our Semester Programs and Accademia dell’Arte Summer Program: Learning in Tuscany.

One private charter bus will collect students at 4 pm from the Florence airport. This bus will arrive in Arezzo at approximately 5 pm.

Is there a meeting point at the Florence airport?

Once you collect your luggage and walk through the sliding doors you will see a small area with some chairs. An Accademia staff member will meet you there before 4:00 pm and take you to the charter bus.

What happens if I cannot be at the meeting point by 4:00?

Students arriving later than this scheduled time—whether in accordance with individual itineraries or as a result of unexpected delay— are responsible for making their own way to Arezzo without accompaniment. As a precaution you will be emailed detailed directions on how to get to the Accademia from the Florence airport.

What if I am not flying into Florence or I’m not enrolled into a Semester Program or the Accademia dell’Arte Summer Program: Learning Tuscany?

If you plan to arrive at an Italian airport other than the Florence airport, you will be emailed detailed directions on how to get from your arrival airport to the Accademia dell’Arte.

Is there a number I can call in case my flight is delayed, redirected or I miss my connecting flight?

Accademia dell’Arte (Italy)      – office landline                       (011 39) 0575 294155

24 Hour Emergency Phone     – cellphone                              (011 39) 331 256 7876

When calling from Italy omit the numbers in parentheses.

What should I do if the airline loses my luggage?

  1. Report missing items to the proper authorities at the airport. Look for the lost luggage information desk in the baggage claim area of the airport in which you arrive.
  2. Ask them to deliver your bag to: Accademia dell’Arte Villa Godiola Via San Fabiano 9 Arezzo, Italia 52100
  3. Give them the following phone contact information: Cell 331 256 7876 (This is our 24 Hour Emergency Phone)

They will print out a page with your lost luggage information that will have your claim reference number. Do not lose this piece of paper. An Accademia staff member will need this document to help you follow up with the airline once you arrive on site.

Is there any kind of transportation provided by the Accademia dell’Arte on departure day?

Since our students may have differing departure dates, the Accademia dell’Arte does not provide any transportation on departure day.

What should I pack in my carry-on?

  • Important documents: passport and visa, IDs, directions to your destination
  • Phone numbers (program contacts and emergency numbers)
  • One change of clothes (underwear, shirt, pants)
  • Jacket or sweatshirt (planes get cold on long flights)
  • Any prescription medicines (including contact lenses and glasses)

What should I pack on my suitcase?

Previous students suggest packing the following items:

Warm slippers or flip-flops

Comfortable walking shoes (better if water resistant)

A set of workout clothes

Swimsuit

Coat/Warm Jacket (better if water resistant – semester programs only)

Light water resistant jacket (summer programs)

Physical Theatre and Dance students only:

Warm wool socks for the dance studio

Solid sweat pants and clothes appropriate for physical work.

Jazz shoes and/or ballet slippers and/or character shoes (only if you already own them)

Knee-pads

Stage make up

Should I pack school supplies?

You will need notebooks. Many American students prefer to bring their own supplies, as European academic supplies are different to what they are used to.

Your free time at the Accademia will be limited during the week and you may not have the opportunity to purchase supplies prior to the beginning of classes.

Should I pack any toiletries?

Many products you normally use might not be available here, but similar items are typically accessible. If specific products are necessary to your daily regimen, bring them with you. Also, there is a Sephora in town, but prices are somewhat higher than in the US.

How many suitcases should I pack?

Do not plan to take more than you can carry yourself. Do a “trial run” and carry your luggage for 15 minutes. If that is not comfortable, decide what you can leave behind!

Huge suitcases are not practical, especially since you will probably want a small suitcase or backpack for weekend trips. Remember that your luggage should make your trip easier, not more difficult. Pack lightly!

Can I pack my own appliances?

You cannot use American appliances in your rooms. Plugging in an American appliance can cause blown fuses, power outages and damage to the appliance itself. Laptops, digital cameras, video cameras and iPods are okay to use if they have internal converters and are used with adapters.

  • Adapters adapt the plug prongs from the American version (flat prongs) to the Italian standard (round prongs) in order to get the plug into the outlet.
  • They do not convert electricity.
  • Adapters are used on appliances with internal converters.
  • Usage of converters of electricity is forbidden because they will blow fuses.

Should I provide ADA with basic health records?

Accademia dell’Arte requires students, along with his or her physician where applicable, to complete and submit the Health Information and Evaluation forms in their entirety. We also recommend that you provide copies of basic health records so that they can be kept on file. This is not a requirement (unlike the Medical Release and Health Information forms included in your application) but any additional information could be helpful in emergency situations where you might not be able to speak for yourself.

What kind of health insurance do I need?

In order to participate in our program you must have one of the following:

  • Health insurance though one or both parents
  • Student health insurance through a university sponsored program
  • Independent student travel health insurance

Are there medical expenses I might have to pay upfront while studying abroad?

The Accademia dell’Arte has a school doctor. Visits can be booked through the Office of Student Services and their cost is included in your tuition. The doctor will be able to diagnose, treat and prescribe medications. You will be responsible for purchasing and obtaining any prescription medication.

Your American insurance will typically cover up to 80% of non-emergency visits abroad. This of course depends on what type of insurance you have. You will need to keep the Italian doctor receipts and fill out a claim form for third party reimbursement.

If you need to see a specialist (dentist, gynecologist, etc.) in a private office, you need to be prepared to pay up front from €30 to €100 (estimates), and then wait to get reimbursed.

Should I bring any medication?

Regulations regarding the availability of medication differ from country to country. This means that certain medication—in a generic form or otherwise—may not exist or may not be offered in Italy. This applies to certain over-the-counter medications, as well.

Students who regularly take any medication should bring enough to last throughout the program, as well as the prescriptions themselves. It is virtually impossible to get medication mailed through customs.

Previous students have suggested filling a prescription for general antibiotics in the United States and setting it aside in the event that an illness manifests itself that you will need to treat (generally pertaining to severe Flu or Bronchitis). If you have a chronic illness that requires daily medication, please bring enough with you for your entire time abroad.

Get generic descriptions of the compositions of the medications you take from your doctor, just in case you lose your medication while you are here. This includes—but is not limited to—birth control, insulin and psychotropic medication.

Students are advised to bring a personal first aid kit and include Bactine and Neosporin for minor cuts and abrasions, and Imodium for temporary diarrhea.

In addition, we advise you to bring any standard medication with you. Suggestions include:

  • Ibuprofen
  • Tylenol
  • Advil
  • Motrin
  • Nyquil
  • Sudafed
  • Benadryl (pills and topical)
  • Bug bite topical ointment/insect repellant (the mosquitoes here are intense 365 days a year)
  • Antibiotic topical ointment
  • Generic sleep aid
  • Over-the-counter yeast infection treatment (yeast infection medication requires a prescription in Italy)

What if I wear contact lenses?

Please bring your current prescription written out by your eye doctor just in case you have to get new glasses here. Do not put any prescription medications or eyewear in your checked luggage.

What if I have to take regular shots?

Students who regularly take insulin, allergy or other shots, should pack a good supply of syringes; not all sizes are available abroad. Include a doctor’s note with syringes as they can be construed as drug paraphernalia.

Can I be sent medicines from the U.S.?

It is virtually impossible to ship medicine from the US to Italy. All medications get held up in Italian customs for a variety of reasons and might not be released.

What if I need counseling services while I’m in Italy?

Counseling services are not available on site. We do, however have a list of psychiatrists and psychologists that we can recommend. Most appointments can cost anywhere from €100 to €180 per hour.

To see an English-speaking specialist you will have to travel to Florence, which is an hour train ride each way. It is the responsibility of the student to pay for their appointment and travel expenses.

We can arrange for you to have a private space to Skype/call a therapist of your choosing back in the U.S.

What if I have special nutrition requirements?

If you are a vegetarian/vegan or have any dietary restrictions, you must note this on your Health Form and notify the Office of Student Services prior to your arrival.

You should describe your diet, specify what foods you avoid and include information concerning flexibility of dietary restrictions.

Do I have to be vaccinated in order to travel to Italy?

Currently, travel to Italy does not require immunizations. It is the student’s responsibility to be aware of new health information regarding the locations to which they plan to travel. The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) provide a wealth of information for travelers. Please review the pertinent information on their websites prior to your departure.

Routine shots are recommended if you are not up-to-date with shots such as, measles/mumps/rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria/pertussis/tetanus (DPT) vaccine, poliovirus vaccine, etc. Ask your doctor if any vaccinations are recommended.

What currency does Italy use?

The currency in Italy is the euro. The euro is also the official currency of the Eurozone, which consists of 19 of the 28 members of the European Union. It is important that you understand the currency conversion from US dollars prior to departure. You can check currency conversion rates online at www.xe.com.

How do I access money while abroad?

Major credit cards: Cash advances are available from most ATM machines all over the world for those who hold VISA, MasterCard or American Express cards. You will be charged an interest rate on cash advances, thus we recommend withdrawing the largest amount possible (usually €250) each time so as to avoid being charged repeatedly. Please contact your credit card company for details.

Debit cards from your local bank: Cash advances are available from most ATM machines. Before you leave, contact your bank to find out exact international locations of machines connected to your card’s network. Notify your bank and/or credit card provider that you will be traveling abroad to prevent your card(s) from being locked. As a protection against identity theft, banks and credit card providers will often lock a credit/debit card if it is used outside of the card’s home region without notification.

Should I bring cash?

You should bring some cash to help you with unforeseen expenses while travelling. Please note that exchanging American currency (USD) for Euros (EUR) will not offer an optimal exchange rate. Also, banks hold specific hours of operation and due to your academic schedule there may not be sufficient time during the week to exchange currency.

Should I bring traveler’s checks?

Traveler’s checks are not suggested. In addition to inopportune hours, banks will apply a fee for exchanging traveler’s checks. Shops do not accept traveler’s checks.

Should I have a working cellphone while abroad?

Yes, we advise students to have a working cellphone with them while abroad so they can contact and be contacted in case of emergency.

Should I bring my cellphone or should I buy a new one in Italy?

You can certainly bring your cellphone and decide whether to purchase an Italian sim card or keep your own.

A basic Italian phone may cost €40-€60. Most Italian cell phone carriers employ a pay-as-you-go plan. Once activated students may receive calls for their entire stay at no additional cost.

Can I receive mail while abroad?

Yes, you can. Please use the following address:

YOUR NAME

Accademia dell’Arte

Via San Fabiano 9

52100 Arezzo ITALIA

What about packages?

Airmail packages sent from the United States take about two weeks to arrive. Packages sent by sea take about three months. If family or friends send you a package with an insurance value stated on the documents, customs and value-added tax will cost you almost 30% of the amount declared. Do not have your family send you anything expensive; you will pay too many fees.

Please note: medicines, food, lotions, soaps and makeup cannot be cleared from custom.

Italian customs authorities do not accept zero as a declared value for shipped items. Make sure the declared value is somewhere between €20 – €30.

Please note: We recommend that summer sessions students not have any packages mailed to them. Usually, packages do not arrive in a timely manner, meaning that you would probably not receive your package until after you have left the program.

Where will I be staying?

The Accademia dell’Arte campus is located at Villa Godiola, a restored renaissance villa just outside Arezzo. Both the center of Arezzo and the city train station are readily accessible and are approximately 20 minute and 40 minutes walks, respectively (although times differ with each student’s pace). Taxis can be called from campus and a typical taxi ride to the train station costs about €10.

What are the rooms like?

We have double and triple rooms on campus. While we cannot guarantee one standard of housing, all accommodations are of a high caliber.

What are the amenities provided?

  • 1 comforter
  • 1 duvet cover
  • 1 fitted sheet
  • 1 pillow case
  • 1 pillow
  • 1 medium towel
  • 1 small towel
  • desk, bed, lamp, shared wardrobe, shared bathroom

Do I have to wash my own linens and towels?

No, the Accademia periodically provides clean linens and towels. Linen and towel exchange will be further explained during orientation.

Do I have to clean my room?

Students are responsible for the daily maintenance of their rooms. Cleaning items are available for your use in each of the residence halls.

Are there quiet hours?

National quiet hours begin at 11pm Sunday through Thursday and midnight on Friday and Saturday.

Are there staff members on campus at all times?

Staff members live in close proximity to the villa and are on call should emergency situations come up. Also, the Guardian/Student Life Coordinator lives at the villa and is the point of reference for students.

Is smoking allowed on campus?

Smoking is prohibited inside the buildings and in all outside communal areas. In addition to being an ADA regulation, this is also an Italian law.

Is there a student social space on campus?

The Limonaia is a student social space found on the far side of the villa. Students are responsible for coordinating the use of this space and are expected to cooperate with one another in the maintenance of the area. The Limonaia is the only student common area open 24 hours a day.

What is the Accademia dell’Arte drinking policy?

Drinking age in Italy is 18. The Limonaia is the only area of the villa where storage and consumption of alcohol is allowed.

Can I make photocopies?

Students can print and make photocopies only through the purchase of a campus printing card. Each card costs €8 and provides 50 copies, or sheets of paper. Printing cards may be purchased in the Office of Student Life.

Are there computers I can use on campus?

We have two computers available for students use.

What if I miss a meal? Can I be refunded?

Students are not refunded for missed meals and they are not allowed to exchange meals with those not associated with the Accademia.

Which meals are included in my tuition?

Your tuition includes breakfast, lunch and dinner from Monday through Friday.

How can I do my laundry?

Coin-operated washing machines are available on campus for your convenience. Coins may be purchased in the Office of Student Life for €3 per coin.

Is there internet?

We have wireless Internet throughout the main villa and residence halls, so bring your laptop! However, please keep in mind that you are living in a Renaissance structure in the hills of Tuscany and the Internet connection may not always be stable.

Where can I eat on the weekends?

If you are not traveling at the weekend and you don’t want to go out for your meals, you can eat in the Limonaia. The Limonaia is a student social space that includes tables, chairs, refrigerators, and a sofa. There is also a small kitchen with a sink and a microwave oven.

When do I have to check out?

All students are required to check out by 10 am on the scheduled day of departure. Please arrange your travel plans accordingly.

What will my life be like while studying at the Accademia?

As student of the Accademia dell’Arte it is expected that you are here to study, train and contribute to a generally cooperative atmosphere. These are essential components of artistic activity, particularly in the sphere of performing arts. These expectations are in place to ensure that we live and work together cooperatively.

While living in Arezzo you are a representative of Accademia dell’Arte and as such we expect that your personal interaction in Italy reflect well upon the institution. In addition, the starting point of your personal journey is to contribute positively to the community environment at the Accademia itself.

Will it be an issue if I don’t speak Italian?

Italians are renowned for being warm and welcoming people. You’ll find that the majority of people in Arezzo, especially shopkeepers and restaurant workers speak some English and it is not so hard to navigate the city even with limited Italian language skills. While they may not expect visitors to be fluent in Italian, locals warm up to you quickly if you try to engage them using the little Italian you know or you make up.

Can I travel on my free time?

We encourage you to travel during the mid-term break (semester programs only) and on free weekends. Staying local to get to know your host city is a meaningful aspect of studying aboard. Be sure to spend at least two weekends in Arezzo, especially during the antique fair (first weekend of the month) so you see the sights and get to know your home away from home. We guarantee that you will enjoy exploring the cobblestone streets and watching locals like as it unfolds around you.

The Office of Student Services is happy to provide suggestions for exploration of Italy and Europe’s rich cultural, historical and artistic treasures and help you make travel arrangements.

Can I rent scooters or cars while studying abroad?

Students are not permitted to rent or operate motorized vehicles of any kind – cars, scooters, motorcycles, etc.

How do I get around?

Once here you will see that locals walk everywhere. If you wish to you can call a taxi and maybe share the ride into town with other fellow students.

Can I have guests?

Yes you can. In accordance with Italian anti-terrorism laws, no unregistered guests are permitted on campus overnight for any reason. Student hosts are required to register their guests and pay for amenities (meals, bed space) provided to their guest(s) on the day their guest(s) will be present, or prior to said date.

Daytime guests are allowed on campus from 9 am to 11 pm on weekdays and until 1 am on weekends. Guests must be accompanied by their student host at all times.

Unregistered guests are not permitted to be in residence halls.

Overnight guests will be registered with the Arezzo police and will be provided with a proper bed space in compliance with fire hazard laws. In accordance with these regulations, guests are not permitted to stay overnight either on your floor or in your bed.

Usually we have bed spaces available throughout the semester. If family or friends would like to visit while you are here, please plan ahead as bed spaces tend to get reserved quickly. We are always available to help you find other accommodations in Arezzo, as well.

Will I have non-academic obligations during my study abroad?

Only if you are enrolled in our semester programs. In order to live and work together, students will rotate through specific community responsibilities that help to coordinate various aspects of day-to-day residential life while in this program. In the true spirit of ensemble and community, you will be responsible for working together on various levels of your living experience in order to learn from each other in a collaborative way.

What should I do if I need assistance while studying at the Accademia?

General questions or concerns or emergencies can be dealt with the Director of Student Services during regular office hours. The Student Life Coordinator lives on campus, so if you are in need of emergency assistance after hours, you just have to call our 24 hours emergency phone.

How many students participate in Accademia dell’Arte programs?

We have anywhere from 10 to 50 students for each of our programs. Given the size of this community, cooperation from each member is necessary if the program is to function smoothly.

What kind of semester program does the Accademia dell’Arte offer?

Our semester program is an ensemble-oriented, conservatory-style study abroad program committed to providing quality performing arts training for young artists who want to focus on their craft. We look for students who are passionate about physical theatre, music and dance, dedicated to their craft, and who understand the commitment, self-discipline and professional approach necessary to create and maintain quality artistry. As a member of this artistic collective, you are expected to participate in a pro-active and positive way to overall academic, residential and social aspects of life here. Our program requires a special commitment on the part of every individual member.

Class Frequency: You will be working roughly 6 – 7 hour days, 5 days per week, with occasional evening sessions. Because of our conservatory-style training program, the in-class hours are probably longer than you would be used to in your home university.

Weekends: Weekends are generally free, but we might be forced to schedule workshops on a Saturday or Sunday. If that happens we try to compensate for these particularly demanding periods of study by adding an extra rest day during the week; however, given that we are collaborating with artists who lead very full independent artistic careers, we have to work around their availability.

*Please note, the above information may differ slightly between Physical Theatre, Dance and Music programs due to the separate curriculum, instructors and schedules.

What kind of summer program does the Accademia dell’Arte offer?

Our summer programs give students the rare opportunity to work and study in a community with shared interests where exploring, sharing and reflecting provide the basis of personal development. You will be exposed to the natural wonders of Tuscany, masters of the Renaissance and centuries old cultures embedded inside Arezzo’s walls.

Class frequency: You will be in class Monday through Friday. Accademia dell’Arte Summer Program: Learning Tuscany will also go to Florence for a day excursion.

Weekends: Weekends are generally free.

*Please note, the above information may differ slightly between Summer Physical Theatre Intensive, Art and Activism and Accademia Summer Program: Learning Tuscany due to separate curriculum, instructors and schedules.

How would I know all the specifics in terms of class attendance and requirements?

You will be emailed an academic handbook two months prior the beginning of the program you’re enrolled into.

What is the Accademia grading system?

You will be issued a letter grade for each course. Accademia dell’Arte does not issue pass/fail evaluations. If your home institution offers this option, you will need to communicate with the appropriate individuals at your school that you will be receiving a letter grade and will be responsible for understanding your home institution’s grading scale regarding translation of letters to the pass/fail option.

How does the credit transfer work?

Students are responsible for understanding the credit transfer system that relates to his or her home institution. Accademia dell’Arte will assist in any way possible to ease credit transfer issues, but it is up to students to communicate this need to the academic coordinator as soon as possible,

What are the Accademia assessment criteria?

Accademia dell’Arte is affiliated with Hendrix College and therefore aligns itself with Hendrix’s guidelines for assessment. The grading system is divided into five letter grades: A, B, C, D and F (Fail). There are no + or – moderations possible.

How will my grades be sent to my home institution?

Once Hendrix College has accepted the grading proposed by the Accademia, a transcript will be issued and sent to the appropriate department at your home institution.

Will I be able to drop a course?

Students participating for credit will not be allowed to drop a course. If a student chooses to no longer participate in a course, a letter grade will be issued that reflects this choice.

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