Profile from Rome: Maddie Carrara

With the increasing number of students studying abroad every year, I didn’t want to miss the opportunity. After deciding to study in Rome, Italy, I have spent two months so far having the time of my life. Studying in Rome brought me not only new experiences but new roommates as well. Sharing these memories with girls I’ve just met creates a special bond that can’t be explained. One of which is Madeline Carrara, a junior FMM major at PhilaU and College Fashionista writer from West Caldwell, New Jersey. 

​Maddie and I chose Philadelphia University for the fashion program, but when I asked her why she specifically chose PhilaU, she told me she “felt that it teaches the perfect mix of fashion and business. The NEXUS program was intriguing and we get to collaborate with other majors for our classwork.” As far as what drew her to studying abroad, Maddie said “I was curious about learning about other cultures as well as being able to witness the different looks of fashion in different cities around the world. Like many others, I’ve always wanted to travel, but also have the opportunity to explore my family’s heritage.” At PhilaU, many of the majors have the chance to study abroad somewhere around the world, whether for 3 weeks or 4 months. For an FMM major, the two choices we had were Rome and London. Maddie chose Rome because studying in Europe makes it easier to travel from country to country, and she’s able to use the amount of Italian she had learned. She also chose Rome for little special reason: her family is from Italy and, more specifically, her great grandfather is from Carrara.

​When I asked Maddie what she has liked most about studying abroad so far, she said “travelling around the continent on the weekends and getting out of my comfort zone has been amazing. I am also here with some of my best friends, so to beable to experience this with them is even better.” Now surprisingly, the classes abroad aren’t always as easy as they may seem. However, a few of them do have their benefits. Design Concepts is currently Maddie’s favorite class because it challenges her creatively and lets her experience the design and background aspect that goes into coming up with a collection for an idea created from analyzing trends. “The professors are also very welcoming and they are a great resource for what to do and see in Italy,” Maddie said. Not only are they welcoming, but they all have awesome backgrounds (one is a fashion stylist who works on movies & commercials, while another is a lawyer in Milan). 

​An upside Maddie found from taking classes abroad was the opportunity to take classes that aren’t offered back home and learning from different professors with more worldly views. As far as downsides are concerned, Maddie said “it’s hard to sit in classes that run almost 3 hours when you would rather be out exploring the city.” Aside from class, Maddie has been able totravel to some incredible places around Europe. She has been to Florence, London, and Budapest so far. In the next two months, she will be travelling to Dublin, Barcelona, the Amalfi Coast, Venice, Bologna, Tuscany and Carrara.

​Lastly, Maddie became a College Fashionista this semester. Most College Fashionistas report from home, but she gets to report for Europe! “I really wanted to strengthen my writing skills, and it’s an awesome combination between writing, fashion and photography.” Maddie said. "I thought it would be a fun project to do while I’m abroad.” Getting to capture different styles worn by students from other universities in Rome is a great way to see how everyone expresses themselves differently. Fashion, travel, new cultures, and new opportunities is what study abroad is all about anyway, right?