Scholarship Reflection: Plus3 Italy

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I first off want to say how grateful I am to have received the Thomas Angelo Honors Scholarship to put towards my first study abroad opportunity at Pitt. With the help of the scholarship, it gave my family more peace of mind when deciding whether to or not to have me participate in the Plus3 Program. I can’t express how thankful I am to be a part of Pitt Business and be opened up to experiences like this one where a girl from suburban Rochester, New York gets to explore major cities of Italy and walk through factories that make high-end brands like Gucci and Yeezy – it was truly a once-in-a-lifetime trip.

In Italy, our group traveled to a number of site visits to learn about the supply chain of the fashion/textile industry. The phrase “made in Italy” is one that through time has come to instinctively mean that of quality, old-time values, and luxury – and we got to see the entire process from start to finish that backs up those ideals. We traveled to factories where the group of us got to physically walk along side the production lines, to logistic centers that described how in Italy they haven’t went through as much of a switch to online as in America, and even to the Milan fashion library that holds the largest collection of Vogue Magazines – filled with history of the fashion industry. Each place we went I became more and more awe-struck of the kind of collections the University of Pittsburgh has and how surreal it was that I was getting the chance to ask questions to the heads of these major Italian companies.

I think that while abroad, of course I learned a lot about the fashion industry, but it also helped me to learn a lot about myself as well. I am someone that likes a lot of structure and to always know what is happening next, so travelling tends to worry me more than anything else. I originally chose to try the Plus3 Italy trip because I wanted to force myself out of my comfortzone a little bit, and I feel like I definitely was able to accomplish that, as well as over come it. Now, I know that I want to pursue more study abroad opportunities during my time at Pitt – maybe a longer program next time to somewhere like Australia or New Zealand.

As for my future with Pitt Business, I am a declared marketing major, along with another major in communication rhetoric from the Deitrich School of Arts and Sciences. Even though the double degree program tends to take five years, as of right now I plan to still graduate in 2021 with my other peers. Ever since I was a little girl I have always wanted to be a businesswoman and that will continue to be my goal in the coming years as well.

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