Bologna, Italy

Bologna Partners

DATES: June 1 – June 29, 2017

PROGRAM COST: $4,995 + airfare (Includes: tuition — 3 credits, accommodations, all breakfasts, welcome and farewell meals, travel insurance, program activities and cultural events). Internship program: $4,495 + airfare.

GENERAL LOCATION: The north-central Italian city of Bologna, in the lovely Emilia Romagna region.

MEDIA: TextPhotographyVideo

Application deadline: extended while spaces remain

Apply Now

Mary D'Ambrosio

Questions about the Bologna Project? Contact Program Director Mary D’Ambrosio at: or
800-924-5449 ext. 702

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The Bologna Project

Cover the big global stories of our time, from the struggles of Syrian and African refugees surging through Europe to the post-Brexit controversies that threaten the very existence of the EU. Or delve into the cultural side of this sophisticated university city, famous for its food, street art and nightlife. No matter what your interest, you’ll be mentored by award-winning international journalists, multimedia storytellers and professors, who will help you develop the stories you care about.

You’ll learn to report, write and shoot multimedia stories as foreign correspondents do, while working with award-winning faculty to create a Web documentary about Bologna.

We also offer an internship program, which assigns students to write and shoot for professional English-language publications, in Europe and the United States. Internships are open to graduates of university journalism programs, to graduate students studying journalism, and to early-career professionals who want to sharpen their international reporting skills.

Walking and biking beneath Bologna’s trademark porticos.

Walking and biking beneath Bologna’s trademark porticos.

The Experience

Global Journalism in Bologna is based at the European headquarters of Johns Hopkins’ Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, in the heart of the city’s hip university district. The area is rich with restaurants, beautiful architecture and nightlife, and convenient to all urban bus and train transport.

Students will report on current affairs in Italy, and receive professional instruction in international reporting, videography and basic Italian. This will equip them with the full arsenal of skills expected of the modern foreign correspondent, who is often expected to work both as a writer and a visual journalist. Together, we’ll create a Web documentary about the city.

Classes run each morning, Monday through Thursday. After the customary long Italian lunch break, you’ll spend the afternoons reporting your stories, assisted by University of Bologna student interpreters, and by faculty members who will serve as your advisors.

You’ll also earn three academic credits you can transfer back to your home campus.

Except for the first weekend, devoted to orientation, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are free for travel.

Internships in Bologna

ieiMedia’s Internship Program offers graduating seniors, graduate students and early-career professionals an opportunity to intern as foreign correspondents for professional publications.

Internships run in tandem with the general international reporting program.

Interns work as junior correspondents.

Interns work as junior correspondents for professional publications.

Interns are invited to participate in all regular program instructional and cultural activities. These include Monday through Thursday morning classes in foreign reporting, photojournalism and Italian. In the afternoons, interns will be out reporting, writing and shooting pictures for their assigned publications, with the assistance of interpreters assigned by our partner school, the University of Bologna. As long as an intern’s work meets standards, we expect it to be published — since an important purpose of the internship is to help students develop standout portfolios that demonstrate international reporting prowess.

Interns have reported for such publications as Worldpress, the United Nations-based MediaGlobal, the InterPress News Service, Time Out, Women’s eNews and the travel magazine Transitions Abroad, among others. Until this year, the internship program was based in Istanbul, Turkey. Here are some recent internship clips.

Interns take direction primarily from editors assigned by their publications. But they will also be assigned a faculty adviser in Bologna who will help them shape their stories.

Graduate credit, if desired, should be sought from an intern’s home school.

After applying to the Bologna program, internship applicants should forward a resume, and links to up to three published clips, to Prof. Mary D’Ambrosio, at

Our Awards

After five years in Istanbul, Turkey, this foreign correspondent training program is moving to Bologna. In Istanbul,

  • Student Rachel Aston’s video story was awarded a certificate in a Hearst Multimedia Award competition;
  • Student Kat Russell’s Istanbul video piece was named a finalist for the Hearst Multimedia Award;
  • Our internship program was named a finalist in the 2012 national GoAbroad Innovation Awards.

Academic Credit

Students will earn 3 upper-division journalism credits from either Rutgers University or the University of Jamestown. Credits are transferable to your home campus, and may be accepted as journalism credit by your college or university. Graduates of university journalism programs, graduate students in journalism programs; and working professionals are eligible to apply for internships as junior foreign correspondents.

Course Syllabus

The course schedule and syllabus will be available soon.

Past Projects

Check out the site students produced in the 2015 program, Istanbul Stories – 2015.

Here is the web magazine the students produced in the 2014 program, A Nation in Conflict.

In 2013, our students covered Turkey’s Gezi Park uprising The Battle for Istanbul.

The Food

Bologna is one of the world’s greatest food cities, known for its salami (mortadella, the Italian word for baloney, was born here), prosciutto, Parmesan cheese, lasagna and artisanal tortellini. Dry sparkling regional red and white wines go so well with these dishes that many an apertivo bar will pair them for you.

Our Project Site and Accommodations

Students will stay in dorms on a well-equipped mini campus adjacent to the university district, in use by both Italian and foreign students year round, and a short walk or bus ride to Johns Hopkins.

The double and triple rooms are equipped with bathrooms and kitchenettes, within buildings that include cafeterias, gyms and “multimedia” rooms, which are available for screenings, watching TV and public computer use. Free wifi is provided. 

Travel Opportunities

Travel around Northern Italy

Students can use free time to travel to Venice or Florence or even take in some of the culinary treasures in towns such as Parma or Modena.

Bologna is magnificently located in one of Italy’s most exciting regions, with Florence, Venice, Rome, Milan, the Italian lakes and the Adriatic coast an easy day trip by train or bus.

The Emilia Romagna region itself is well worth exploring: it’s home to some of Italy’s top food destinations and restaurants, among them Osteria Francescana, in 2016 named the world’s best restaurant; to the luxury car empires of Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati; and to the elegant Renaissance cities of Ferrara and Ravenna, known for their palaces, artistic heritage and bike-friendly medieval lanes.

The Faculty

Our faculty come from leading universities and news organizations. 

Program Director

Mary D’Ambrosio is an assistant professor of professional practice at Rutgers University, and the founding editor of Big World Magazine. She previously taught at New York University, Columbia University and Central Connecticut State University.

A dual-U.S. Italian citizen, and a writer specializing in international issues, she has reported widely in Europe and Latin America, for the Associated Press, Global Finance Magazine, and other publications. In 2015 and 2016, she traveled to Italy, Turkey and Germany, to write about the European migration crisis, as part of a project that argues for more humanizing coverage. The first installment was published in the Huffington Post.


Kurt Lancaster is a professor of creative media and film at Northern Arizona University. He is the author of DSLR Cinema (Focal Press), Video Journalism for the Web (Routeldge), Production House Cinema (Focal Press), among other works. His students have gone on to create their own video production houses, worked as producers and cinematographers, as well as earning national and regional award winning films.

View complete faculty biographies on our Bologna Faculty Page.

Students learn to shoot video, and to work with interpreters.

Students learn to shoot video, and to work with interpreters.


The program is open to up to 16 English-speaking college students and recent graduates, from any school.

ieiMedia students have come from New York University, American University, San Francisco State University, the University of Colorado, Elon University, Iowa State University, James Madison University, Louisiana State University, UCLA, University of Maryland, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Temple University, Rice University, the University of Nevada-Reno, Arizona State University, Gonzaga University, the University of Arizona, the University of Montana, Loyola College, San Jose State University, Humboldt State University, San Diego State Technological University, the University of Texas, Dallas, the University of British Columbia, Carleton University and Ryerson University. We’ve also hosted students from India, Japan, the United Kingdom, Puerto Rico, Thailand and Trinidad.

Most of our students are journalism or communications majors, but those majoring in other subjects are also welcome. Non-journalism majors should have a strong interest in reporting, and have had at least some experience working for a college or professional publication.


While the Bologna program provides professional digital cameras for shared use, students may prefer to bring a combined still/video camera of their own. An iPhone or other handheld device is adequate, but a DSLR with video capabilities, such as a Canon Rebel 5Ti or a Nikon D5100; or a compact video camera, such as a Canon Vixia; could also be helpful.

Each student must also bring a laptop computer, and a flash drive for storing and transporting work.

Cover fashion, the arts or urban life.

Cover fashion, the arts or urban life.

Program Cost

Tuition for the three-credit program is $4,995, plus airfare. The cost of the internship program is $4,445. In both cases, the fee includes daily breakfast, elegant welcome and goodbye dinners, housing, all instruction in Italian language, international reporting and photography, basic travel insurance, and special cultural programs and activities. It also includes production of our Web documentary.

Financial Aid

Be sure to check with your school’s financial aid office to see if assistance is available. Many schools offer grants for their students to participate in independent programs.

If you are a Pell Grant recipient, consider applying for a U.S. State Department-sponsored Gilman Scholarship, which provides awards of up to $5,000 for study abroad. The early application deadline in Oct. 4, 2016; the regular application deadline is March 7, 2017.

The National Italian American Foundation is a significant font of study abroad financing to Italy, providing scholarships of $2,000-$12,000 each. Applicants must have a GPA of at least 3.5, and at least one ancestor of Italian heritage.

The Global Foundation for Scholars offers $3,000 scholarships for study abroad experiences.

Here’s a summary of other financial aid options.

Application Process

Students must fill out the online application, and include contact information for two references (academic and/or professional) using the “Apply Now” link below. A $150 application fee is required with the application, but will be returned if a student is not accepted into the program. Application deadline: Rolling admission until program fills.

If you have questions before applying, fill out our contact form.

Apply Now

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