Getting Lost in Florence

Posted by Taylor Jenkins on September 22, 2022

Hi everyone! My name is Taylor Jenkins, and I am currently a senior, graduating in the spring! I am majoring in marketing, with a French minor and earning certificates in international business and digital media. Completing a French minor but studying abroad in Italy may seem contradictory, but my passion lies in fashion and what better place to work in and be surrounded by fashion than in Italy, one of the major fashion capitals on the world. I view myself as a very creative person, and I particularly love to draw and video/photo edit. After graduating, I am hoping to work in creative direction and fashion marketing, specifically in NYC.

I am participating in the Global Business Institute program that Pitt offers. I chose this program because of the amazing opportunity to complete an internship while I am studying here. I am currently working at Tornabuoni Tuscany, which is a beautiful leather goods store that is located right next to the Duomo. I am working with a fellow Pitt student on their social media marketing, as well as writing blog posts for their website. I am super grateful for this opportunity because it involves every aspect of creativity that I am looking for in a job (the amazing location and beautiful bags I get to shoot every day are an added bonus). Through this program, Pitt has given me an opportunity that I most likely would never have without it.

While I am here, I am interested in visiting Florence’s beautiful museums, such as the Uffizi Gallery and the Galleria dell’Academia. I want to immerse myself in the Florence culture by learning about their history and art, and I am hoping that this rich artistic culture will give inspiration to my own artistic endeavors. I also am looking forward to traveling around Italy to gain a better understanding of the country and appreciate its beauty. 

Luckily, CAPA, the international school that Pitt is partnered with to give us this abroad experience, believes in teaching students through both classroom and experiential learning opportunities. My professors believe in taking us to Florence’s local business and historical landmarks to gain a better sense of how and why Florence operates the way it does. I am extremely grateful to be chosen as one of CAPA’s fall vloggers, so I get to take day-to-day content of life in Florence for their social media platforms (mainly Instagram and TikTok). So, if you’re interested in seeing a more visual representation of the daily life of an abroad student, you can check out their social medias!

My Florence apartment is a five-minute walk from the Duomo, which you can see from our window! We are surrounded by many cafés, restaurants, and stores. My apartment is comprised of 2 bedrooms, and I have 3 other roommates, who are all Pitt students too. Our apartment is very homey, and we live in a building with other Italian locals, so it feels as though we are truly apart of the city. We also are living as residents of Florence would, with no dryer or air condition, but windows that have an amazing view to the courtyard behind our apartment building. I am only a five-minute walk to CAPA, as well. 

One thing that I will take with me throughout my study abroad experience is the notion that “in order to truly experience Florence, you must get lost in it”. That is how I want to experience my semester and I look forward to sharing the rest of it here!