The Rome Studies Program is the only foreign studies program among American university architecture schools required for all students.
Selena Anders points to the significant aspects of a Piazza in Siracusa, Sicily
Founded by the School's longtime chair, Frank Montana, the Rome Studies Program began in 1969 as a junior-year abroad program. Today, junior architecture students spend the entire year in Rome and graduate students spend a semester in Rome.
With courses ranging from design studios, drawing and watercolor classes to architectural theory and architectural history, the emphasis is on urbanism and the traditional city, classical architecture and the design of contemporary buildings in a classical manner following the precedents of Vitruvius, Palladio, Borromini and Berini.
Throughout the year, students take field trips to various parts of Italy including Lazio, Tuscany, Veneto, Campania and Sicily. These trips include visits to historic sites with presentations by faculty members, time for sketching and free time to explore the cities.
Italy's rich history provides successful examples of urbanism and architecture that has stood the test of time. Its historical models of buildings and cities are a precious resource in creating architecture appropriate for the 21st century. Students not only walk away with a deeper knowledge of architecture but valuable life experience.