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Meet the Circolo Italiano Officers!



Alan...

I’m majoring in Italian, with a minoring in AET( Arts and Entertainment Technologies), and striving to complete three different certificates: Elements of Computing, Japanese, and Creative Writing. 

Why did you decide to learn Italian?

One of my favorite hobbies is playing video games, I have enjoyed them ever since I really young. One day, I discovered a game set in Florence, Italy in the time of the Renaissance and after playing through the game, I fell in love with the Italian language, culture, and history which prior to playing the game I had little to no knowledge of aside from knowing some of their most iconic foods, pasta and pizza and its capital, Rome. Playing that game is what sparked my curiosity for Italy and what led me to take Italian classes in the first place. 

What’s your favorite city in Italy and Why? 

I’ll have to say that my favorite city has to be Rome hands down. The historical and artistic richness in the city is incredible, from the Colosseum to the statues and building all around the city. You can see the old and new Rome mixing together at every corner.

What’s your favorite Italian restaurant in Texas and Why?

I don’t often go out to eat, therefore I’m not that well acquainted with Italian restaurants in Texas, but one restaurant does come to mind. That being Quattro Gatti a family run Italian restaurant, located on Congress Avenue in Austin. The restaurant has a welcoming and friendly ambiance and it has an assortment of dishes from all over Italy to choose from. The first time I went to Quattro Gatti I order “gli Gnocchi alla sorrentina” a dish made from flour, potatoes, mozzarella, tomato sauce, and basil. I was fortunate enough to have eaten them back in Sorrento, Naples, while I was in the Rome Study Program.  Therefore, going in I was a bit skeptic, but to my surprise, they tasted so similar that it brought me back to the time I took my first bit in Sorrento. 

How do you think your Italian is going to help you find a job once you graduate?

When I get asked this question I always remember a line from Nelson Mandela: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” In my opinion being able to communicate in a different language opens the door to interactions that feel so much genuine. Back when I was in Rome I used to enter stores and restaurants where the employee would greet me in English but then I started to talk to them in Italian I could see their faces become brighter they became more friendly and their speech more fluent and loose. Going back to the question, I believe that being able to have this type of interaction between people of two different cultures is essential to the diverse and ever growing working world of today.


Jennifer...

I am a psychology (BA) major! 

Why did you decide to learn Italian?

I decided to study Italian because my grandmother came from Calabria, and I thought it would be very interesting to learn about the culture of Italy. I had taken 5 years of Spanish prior to coming to college, and wanted to continue my studies of different languages and cultures! 

What’s your favorite city in Italy and Why?  My favorite city in Italy is Florence because of the atmosphere, shopping, and nice people. I had the best time in Florence with a couple of my friends during the Rome Study Program trip!  What’s your favorite Italian restaurant in Texas and Why?

My favorite Italian restaurant in Texas is Patrizis! I love Patrizis also because of the fun atmosphere. There is usually live music, fun lights, and delicious food. It is outdoors, but is usually open rain or shine! I went once during a storm and was perfectly fine due to the awnings they have. The space is shared with a bar, so you are welcome to go get your drinks from there.  How do you think your Italian is going to help you find a job once you graduate?

I am going into special education, and although I will most likely not speak Italian during my career, I know I have experience with challenges in communication from taking Italian, and those skills of finding ways to communicate will go far when speaking with the children I will work with who may have communication disorders. 


Daniela...

International Relations and Italian major

Why did you decide to learn Italian?

I decided to start learning Italian because I had always loved the language and my sisters had studied it at UT as well.  What’s your favorite city in Italy and Why? My grandmother is from a small town called Cortina D’Ampezzo in northern Italy and I got to visit it during a free weekend of the Rome Study Program and I absolutely loved it. I can’t wait to go back! What’s your favorite Italian restaurant in Texas and Why? I don’t think I can pick one favorite I love so many. Numero 28 is always a great place for dinner.  How do you think your Italian is going to help you find a job once you graduate? Studying a foreign language is incredibly useful for a career in business and marketing.

I also plan to get my masters abroad and know that Italian will be a hugely valuable skill.  Plan to attend the Tavola Italiana every Wednesday from 4:30-5:30pm to practice you ITALIAN! Locations will change so check Il Circolo Italiano's FB page!