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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Florence, Italy
  • Program Terms: Academic Year, Fall, Spring, Summer
  • Host Program Website: Click to visit
  • Program Sponsor: Studio Arts College International (SACI) 
  • Budget Sheets: Academic Year, Fall, Spring, Summer
  • App for Spring & Calendar Year open July 1/Apps for Summer, Fall, & Academic Year open December 1
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Study Abroad Contact: Lynn Neddo Program type: Direct Enroll
Area of study: Art, Art history, Communication studies, Creative writing, Graphic design, Italian Click here for a definition of this term Minimum GPA: 3.0
Eligibility: Freshman, Junior, Senior, Sophomore Housing options: Apartment (shared), Student responsibility
Language prerequisite: No Language of instruction: English
Program Description:
The extensive range of studio arts, design, conservation, art history, and Italian culture and language courses provides our students with the means to meet their individual educational needs while connecting them with the rich cultural heritage of Italy.

The student body is comprised of students enrolled at US universities and at institutions in other countries. In both Fall and Spring, a student can enroll in five classes for a total of 15 credits. During these terms, students additionally have the possibility to work as apprentices with artisans, and advanced students may be eligible to take a directed independent study or traineeship in a design firm, museum, or gallery. As part of their classes, SACI students often create artwork for local hospitals and human rights organizations, and restore major art treasures that are a part of Italy's cultural heritage. Outside of class, student volunteers can teach English at elementary schools, serve as English-language museum guides, and assist at human rights agencies.

In addition to visiting many famous Italian cities over the course of the year, students use a museum pass provided by SACI to visit Florentine museums and historic sites. Students visit artists' and designers' studios, private collections, galleries, art fairs, and theaters. They have access to modern and historic art collections, research libraries, and contemporary art museums.

Academic Year and Semester Abroad Program students enjoy many opportunities to exhibit their artwork in SACI's two galleries. The Academic Year Abroad culminates in a major end-of-year student exhibition which serves as an opportunity for students to display their work also to the Florentine public.

Outdoor studio

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Location| Courses & Credits| Housing| Program Costs| Application Process | More Information|

Studio Arts College International

What better place to study art than in Italy?? Students have the opportunity to study at Studio Art College International (SACI), located in the heart of Florence, Italy. This institution for foreigners is recognized as one of the leading overseas institutions in the areas of studio art, art history, art conservation and Italian language and culture. It attracts 100 - 150 international students each semester, many of them from the United States.

SACI was founded in 1975, and now offers contemporary art study in the historical setting of Florence to top art students from around the world. It provides a stimulating educational experience that draws upon the rich cultural resources of both past and present Italy. The inspiring and well-equipped facilities of the palazzo and separate Graduate Center are located a few steps from Michelangelo's Medici Chapel, the Laurentian Library, the Duomo, the church of Santa Maria Novella, and the bustling activity of Florence's central market.

Students are required to study Italian throughout their stay. However, the remaining courses will be taught in English.


Florence ("Firenze" in Italian; pronounced fee-ren-dze) is a traditional cultural center for Renaissance art and Italian language study. The city reflects centuries of art and architecture, from streets based on the original Roman settlement to 19th century avenues surrounding the city. The LdM school buildings are centrally located in downtown Florence, near the Duomo and San Lorenzo market.

Courses & Credits

A wide variety of academic and studio subjects are offered at SACI, many at multiple levels. Art Department classes normally meet with instructors for 90 hours per term (including field trips). For each studio course, students are expected to fulfill a minimum of 45 hours of additional studio time per term beyond the class hours.

All of the programs at SACI in studio art, art history and art conservation make broad use of field trips. Students will visit the major museums, churches, and monuments in Florence, and travel to many of Italy's great cities and smaller Tuscan villages, over the course of the semester. In addition, courses often make use of field trips to artists' studios, private collections, galleries, art fairs, crafts centers, professional designers' studios, and manufacturers of Italian design products. SACI students have access to modern collections and contemporary museums, such as the Museum of Contemporary Art in Prato and the Marino Marini Museum in Florence.

Semester Program
All semester students are required to enroll in an Italian language course during their term abroad. Students then select four other courses to earn a total of 15 credits for a complete semester. (Due to the demand on your time per studio art course, SACI recommends that students do not register for more than three studio art courses per term.) The year or semester abroad program at SACI culminates in a major end of year student exhibition which serves as an opportunity for students to display their work in a European context.

Advanced students or students who have been at SACI for at least one semester and are in high standing may propose and contract to undertake a Directed Independent Study (DIS) in a given subject. The DIS structure enables a student to propose a study plan to meet a specific educational need pertinent to individual artistic or scholarly development. The DIS may utilize facilities and resources both within and outside of SACI.

Summer Program
The summer program is divided into two terms; Late Spring and Summer. UNC students may attend one or both sessions. Note: SACI recommends that summer students take no more than one studio course per summer term.

Courses in this program are Transfer Credit.
Transfer Credit Courses (not taught by UNC Faculty): ACTION REQUIRED
  • You must submit the Credit Request Form to earn any credit for your time abroad.
  • You must earn the equivalent of a C or higher to earn any credit.
  • These courses will transfer back to UNC as “TREQ” credits.
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SACI program students are housed in furnished apartments in and around Florence. Apartments range in size from one to seven students, and are within a 10-20 minute walk of the school and the historical center of Florence.
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Program Costs

Review the Budget Sheet posted above for detailed information on costs and fees. Costs vary per term and are subject to change. Furthermore, SACI offers several scholarship opportunities. Refer to their website for more details and note early deadlines.

Tuition and fees for the program are set based on the host institution’s rates, and will be charged to the participant’s UNC student account. Always refer to the Budget Sheet on this page, and not the host institution’s posted rates, as it is customized for UNC students. Review the Budget Sheet for additional Cashier Billed Expenses and Out-of-Pocket Costs. The Study Abroad Office strongly encourages students to budget carefully for their time abroad. 

Getting Started: Funding Study Abroad
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Application Process

Follow these steps to apply for this program:
  1. Complete the required UNC application by clicking “Apply Now” at the top of the page. If you have not done so already, create a profile to start your application.
  2. Follow the instructions on your UNC application to submit the supplemental application required by the partner institution.
  3. In order to participate in the program, both the Study Abroad Office and partner institution must accept your application. Note that decision notification timelines may differ.
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More Information

For information on requesting ARS accommodations (academic, health, and mobility concerns) for a study abroad program, contact the Advisor for Access.
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Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2021 09/10/2020
10/04/2020 01/07/2021 04/26/2021
Academic Year 2021-2022 02/10/2021
03/05/2021 TBA TBA
Fall 2021 02/10/2021
03/05/2021 09/02/2021 12/20/2021

Indicates that deadline has passed

App for Spring & Calendar Year open July 1/Apps for Summer, Fall, & Academic Year open December 1