By: Courtney Roberts
When I switched into the College of Arts & Sciences, I expected nothing good to come from the four-semester language credit requirement. I took a few years of Spanish in high school, but when I heard it was extremely difficult at Baylor, I opted out. Instead, I’ve spent the last four semesters learning Italian. During my Baylor career, there are a handful of classes that stand out as my favorites, but I absolutely love my Italian class.
My interest in Italian sparked when I studied abroad on the Baylor in Florence program in Italy a few summers ago. Since the trip is geared primarily toward journalism majors, we took courses in photography and magazine writing. (Sounds hard, right?)
I didn’t have any exposure to the Italian language before I went. I hoped to pick up some words, but I spent most of my time sightseeing, going on adventures with my friends and trying out every gelato shop in town. It was an entirely new cultural experience for me, and I loved every minute of it. So of course, I chose the bellissimo Italian language to fill my credit requirement.
The reason I have loved this class is because of the things we’ve done outside of class. We’ve gone to see the opera in Italian, watched movies, sung as part of the foreign language groups at Christmas on Fifth and made some good friends along the way. Many of the people in my class now were in my class last fall in our first semester of Italian. It feels close-knit and like a fun little family.
As part of my class this semester, all of the students have to contribute to a class blog where we write about topics that interest us. Some of the best ones have been picking the perfect outfit and describing our favorite songs by an Italian artist. (My favorite is “Ti Porto Via Con Me” by Jovanotti!)
In all seriousness, taking a foreign language is so valuable. It’s challenging but so rewarding! When every other class you’re taking can be overwhelming or sometimes dreary, the foreign language classes are a nice escape to somewhere fun and beautiful-like Europe. It reminds me that there is more out there than Waco, Texas!