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Summer in Italy

Study Italian in Grado. Live with an Italian family. Get university credit.

Download the Summer in Italy brochure.

An Ideal Setting

Off the beaten tourist path, but close to Venice both physically and culturally, Grado is an ancient, picturesque island-city with a celebrated Old Town, a quaint fishing port and world-class beaches. Grado is a rare and ideal setting for a school of Italian: a beautiful, historic town full of lively summer activities not far from many of the most celebrated northern Italian cities, but where the tourists come mostly from Italy and where very little of any other language is spoken.


Grado is located in the historic northeastern Italian region of Friuli Venezia-Giulia, at the geographical heart of Europe, an area that has played host to many different peoples and cultures, including the Celts, Romans, Huns, Byzantines, Lombards, Franks, Venetians, Ottomans, French, and Hapsburgs, before becoming a region of Italy. Each culture has left its mark and the result is a region rich in diverse architecture and art, and one with world-class cuisine and wine. The New York Times called Friuli "Italy's Secret Garden," and the region has only lately been discovered and appreciated by non-Europeans. Fred Plotkin, celebrated author of several books on Italian culture, sums it up well in his book Italy for the Gourmet Traveler: "Friuli is the great undiscovered region of Italy."

Courses for every student

The heart of each course is the small group language class, which meets for three hours per day. Students are immersed in a setting that explores grammatical structures of the Italian language in the context of a specific theme. All courses also offer listening-comprehension exercises and an opportunity to perfect pronunciation. Intermediate and advanced students at all levels discuss various works of Italian literature.

First Year Italian (ITAL 171-172)

Emphasis is on listening comprehension and speaking as well as on grammatical structure, writing and reading skills. The course aims to develop a solid proficiency in all aspects of Italian and makes extensive use of visual and audio material.

Intermediate Italian (ITAL 271-272)

Emphasis is on oral and written expression, on listening comprehension and on building vocabulary, though the course does provide an intense review of grammar as well. Learning is facilitated by the careful selection of readings from the most celebrated Italian writers, including poets, dramatists and novelists. A variety of real-life cultural materials are also employed in class, including newspaper and magazine articles and radio and television broadcasts.

Advanced Italian (ITAL 371)

In this course, students will engage in conversation through film, current events, opera, contemporary music and short stories. Though the course will focus especially on developing the students' oral fluency and writing competence, students will improve their writing, reading, listening-comprehension and oral skills. This course will prepare students for more advanced work in Italian. 

Italian 375 - Introduction to Literature

This course will introduce and examine an Italian literary and/or cultural topic. Taught in Italian.

Advanced Reading and Conversation, & Independent Projects (ITAL 470)

Emphasis is primarily on advanced conversation and composition, with special attention given to complex grammatical structures and advanced vocabulary acquisition. Learning is facilitated by using a variety of literary genres including dialogue, short story, novel, critical essay, drama, film, music and art.

Our effective teaching method is visual and based on interaction; students are encouraged to practice what they have learned in real-life situations. This immersion method has been proven to be extremely productive, engaging and fun.

Students experience Italy from the inside, living with an Italian family. All families are carefully chosen and have years of experience with international exchange programs.

Opportunities to Explore

In addition to the City of Grado's Summer Activities and Festivals, the program offers weekly social and cultural activities throughout the summer months. These may include group-outings to concerts, plays, or art exhibits, many beach activities as well as occasional evening slide lectures on Italian history or the history of art. Recent examples of cultural activities include participating in a re-creation of an ancient Roman dinner; viewing a Roman play performed in Italian amidst nearby Roman ruins; attending an evening jazz concert in a nearby castle; and organizing trips to the celebrated Operetta of Trieste and the Verona Summer Opera festival. 

In addition to participating in our cultural activities, students are invited to participate in our unique privately-guided excursions. This year we will lead students through the region of Tuscany, where we will spend a week learning Italian while living in a charming farm house.

Students are encouraged to explore the nearby ancient Roman city of Aquileia, one of the five official Jubilee cities of the Vatican and a United Nations World Heritage site, as well as the Medieval town of Udine, the cultural center of the Friuli region known chiefly for its Venetian architecture and its abundant art of the great Venetian master, Giambattista Tiepolo. During the week-ends, it is easy to travel to the famed Collio wine region for wine-tasting; to the Medieval town of Cividale del Friuli; to the northeastern Italian Alps; and to Piran, Slovenia and Porec, Croatia.

Session Dates

Two sessions will be offered during summer 2017. A 4-week session is the equivalent of one semester of university-level Italian, while partaking in both sessions is the equivalent of 2 semesters of Italian.

1 4 weeks (Monday, June 11 to Saturday, July 7 ) 1.0
2 4 weeks (Saturday, July 7 to Thursday, August 2) 1.0
1 & 2 8 weeks (Monday, June 11 to Thursday, August 2) 2.0

Tuition & Fees

Application Fee: $55
Insurance: $60
Tuition and Residential Fees:

All students enrolled at an accredited higher education institution receive 50% discount on tuition regardless of their financial aid status. Residential fee includes private room in a family home, breakfast and dinner, and student activities in Grado. Rates subject to change. Not Included: Transportation to and from Grado, health and travel insurance.

Session(s)tuitionResidential & Program FeesTotal
$2,939 with academic discount
$1,900 ($7,778) 
$4,839 with academic discount
2 ($5,878)
$2,939 with academic discount
$1,900 ($7,778
$4,839 with academic discount
1 & 2 ($11,756)
$5,878 with academic discount
$3,800 ($15,556)
$9,678 with academic discount

Program Director

Professor Francesca Seaman is a native speaker of Italian and the director of the Italian Program at DePauw. She graduated with Honors from Stanford University, received a MA from the Ecole Normale, in Paris, France and a Ph.D. in Italian Literature from Yale University. She has been at DePauw since 2004. Read more about Dr. Seaman on her Italian faculty profile page.