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Rome Intercultural Practicum


Rome, Italy

Program Description

This four-week intercultural experience will involve spending structure and “open” time exploring the lived culture of Rome, Italy and the inclusive education occurring in an International School. The experience is a partnership with Marymount International School-Rome and involves five days a week at Marymount International School (~2 full days and 3 half days/week). Structured opportunities to explore and experience the lived culture of Rome (ancient and present) will be built into the four week experience using the half days and Saturdays. One week-end will include a “get away” from Rome, experiencing Sienna and its surroundings. Another week-end will be “open” for participants to plan their own activities.

Marymount International School has hosted JMU College of Education faculty and students for 18 years, this year is our 19th anniversary. The school is a private school serving children from Prek through high school. Our JMU students are assigned to a teacher and work in his/her classroom, supporting learning, engaging with children from all over the world, and observing an approach to classroom management, discipline, and instruction that will probably be new to them. All instruction is in English, learners’ English fluency range from emerging English speakers to native English speakers. The teachers of Marymount also represent many cultures and nations, bringing with them different perspectives and practices regarding education. It is an opportunity for JMU students to work within a school that successfully includes all of its learners, integrating their cultures into the environment and curriculum.

Participants will live in a working community of Rome, learning to communicate, use the currency, grocery shop, use public transportation, navigate around the city, observe daily life for residents and tourists, and explore their ability to immerse and function. We will be living within walking distance of St Peters Square and will have the opportunity, daily, to interact not just with local Romans but visitors from around the world. By visiting sites from Ancient Rome up to modern Rome, students will begin to understand the layers and complexities of a lived culture, reflecting on how this is evident in their own lives, in their professional identities and in their professional practice.

The JMU faculty will work with the Marymount administration and teachers, as well as the JMU students to ensure a cognitively challenging experience, while providing the support necessary to grow towards cultural competence in one’s lived experience and professional practice. This process begins with pre-departure seminars during the spring 2015 semester (to be scheduled after selection of participants) designed to prepare the travelers for immersion into Rome and Marymount, continues through structured assignments and activities during immersion in Rome, including reentry preparations, and wraps up with a group meeting in December, 2015 to catch up and discuss how the experience has impacted us.

Location Description

Our program will be based in Rome, Italy. Rome is Italy`s largest and most populous city and is located in the central-western portion of the Italian peninsula, on the Tiber river. Rome`s history as a city spans over two and a half thousand years. Rome has a significant history in the development of Western Civilization - beginning prior to the Roman Empire up to today’s European Union. Due to its influence in politics, media, the arts and culture, Rome has been described as a global city. While living in Rome, we will be working in Marymount International School Rome. It is a private, Catholic, co-educational day school situated in northern Rome on 40 acres of protected parkland. Because the weather in Rome is generally temperate, JMU participants will be able to take advantage of the neighborhoods¸ sites and activities available to them. Rome is an ideal place for us to explore our own cultural and professional identities, and grow our cultural competence as a citizen of the world and as professional educators.


Cheryl Beverly | | Learning, Technology and Leadership Education


Participants will share apartments at the San Pietro La Corte residence. The apartments are located approximately two blocks from St Peters Square, within walking distance of the River Tiber, and walkable distance to many of Rome’s cultural sites, as well as parks. The apartments are also within walking distance of the regional train station, metro station and multiple bus stops.

Students will be allocated a weekly meal stipend that they can use to purchase groceries and prepare in their apartments, or eat out at local cafes and gelato stands. Some group meals will be planned and provide by the program.

Additional Items to Consider

Although designed for education minors/majors, students in other service related programs (school psychology, OT, school counseling, etc) might find this experience beneficial.

Italian language proficiency is not required, although knowing some Italian is helpful.

Traveling to, and living in Rome does neither require a visa nor immunizations. Working at Marymount does not require a background check but you will need to register your passport and photo with the administrative office for purposes of security. Your passport information will also be on file with our residence manager and any hotels in which we stay during our excursion outside of Rome. Cell phones are not provided by the program but internet access will be provided in the residence.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.75

Prerequisite: EDUC 300

Rising Juniors/Seniors or Graduate Students

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($25 fee)
  • Short essay 
  • Faculty Recommendation
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU and first semester transfer students.

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

apply now Program Closed.

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


EDUC 310: Teaching in a Diverse Society (3 credits)

EDUC 490: Special Topics in Education (3 credits)

EDUC 501: Workshop in Education (3 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.