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PLEASE HELP! Study Abroad either Rome or London for Journalism/PR Major


Sep 22nd, 2014, 11:55 AM
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PLEASE HELP! Study Abroad either Rome or London for Journalism/PR Major

Hello Everyone,

My daughter wants to study abroad next semester and her choices are either Rome or London. I don't know how to direct her as I am not sure which one would be best for her major which is Journalism/Public Relations. I want her to get the best experience, of course, but I want her to go to the place that would best suit her major and where she will get the most out of her experience. Or, does it really matter which location when it comes to her major? I want the location she will be safe, but get the most out of the culture and beauty. I know she will have the best experience either way but, I just do not know how to direct her at all!
Please any help would be greatly appreciated. If anyone knows which one would be best for her major and the pros and cons.

Thank you all in advance,
Kris_Halper is offline  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 12:05 PM
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She should ask her adviser at school, as well as have a discussion with someone in the study abroad office.
yorkshire is offline  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 01:21 PM
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Does she have more of an interest in one location vs. another?
What does being abroad really have to do with whether or not she learns about journalism and PR? Is she going to be interacting with locals as part of her course of instruction?

Is this a case of courses being taught in a locale and that locale simply offering an opportunity to ALSO experience a different culture?
Dukey1 is online now  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 01:30 PM
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YOu need to find out what these programs consist of and whether they have anything to do with her major at all. Unless she knows Italian, being in Rome obviously cannot teach her journalism or PR at all, except from teachers speaking English to teach these special foreign students, so in that case, she could stay home and take those courses. She isn't going to get anything out of Rome itself (I guess she could see the terrible Italian newspapers and TV shows first-hand).

My niece did a semester abroad in London but her major was theater, so it made a lot of sense, there was a lot she could learn from the environment, going to shows, etc. Language and history majors can have reasons to go to some places abroad that fits in with their interests. But she didn't actually take any courses from any university there, her college arranged some, as I recall.

Journalism? Never heard of a journalism study abroad program. If she doesn't know Italian, I presume she isn't doing any kind of internship at an Italian publication. Same for PR work. I know someone who got an internship in advertising in Paris, but she knew French and they do have some cool ads in France, so that made sense, also. It wasn't a study abroad program, though.

I suspect she won't be taking any classes from any local university nor working in any local place, so it doesn't much matter. Most study abroad programs are just for the kids to have fun in another country and aren't related to their major, they just want the experience of being somewhere else, sightseeing, etc. If that's the case here, she should go where she most wants to see things or has some interest in the area.
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 01:56 PM
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Unless she speaks fluent italian, she would likely have considerably more opportunities in London. But as some of the above users pointed out, those programs are more about the unique cultural experiences than anything else. So with that in mind, she should really go where she believes she has most to learn (from a cultural perspective).

However, if she were to be a highly ambitious student, London could give her more opportunities outside of her University for her to go and try to get involved in journalistic activities that may otherwise be a lot more difficult to accomplish in Rome.

In the end, this decision comes down to what she really wants to accomplish and I think it should ultimately be hers to make
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 02:03 PM
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When my daughter studied abroad she was able to talk with other students at her college who had already returned from their programs. You might ask your daughter to see if the study abroad office can help her meet students who have been to both programs.

I would imagine that either place would give your daughter a great experience as she would naturally broaden her knowledge of the culture and history of her location. Does she have a preference? If so, I would probably let her choose which program she feels most excited about or comfortable with.
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 02:34 PM
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I would go with the better quality of the program and also what kind of future she envisions for herself as a journalist. If she is interested in being a foreign correspondent, it would help her tremendously, I think, to get a taste of what it is like to be in a foreign country where you are not fluent in the language.

But if she is interested in becoming a broadcast journalist, then I think it is much more highly developed in the UK and much better preparation for finding a job in the US.
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 03:03 PM
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PS: I actually hadn't read the other people's replies before posting my own and this seems to me to be a new low of thoughtless response, even for Fodor's.

Most journalism schools offer a course of study abroad because journalism is very much about learning about the entire world and understanding different perspectives. I am stunned anybody who even thinks -- let alone people who claim to be travelers -- would think there was no point in a future journalist studying in a foreign country where English is not the first language (not to mention where there is 2000+ years of Western civilization on display.

Even if the end result is pursuing a career in public relations, it will open up a world of opportunities and job possibilities with multi-nationals for a student to show some familiarity with foreign cultures.

Honestly folks on Fodor's, is there really no end to this mean-spirited negativism you constantly all spew? This is a tremendous opportunity for a young person.

I think the rest of you should buy a copy of Jane Lynch's book on bullying and underlying reasons why you're behaving this way.
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 03:38 PM
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"Mean-spirited negativism'? I must have missed something.
Jean is offline  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 03:49 PM
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Kris, can you provide links to the two programs your daughter is considering?
Jean is offline  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 04:07 PM
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Pros to each.
England has a strong face in world wide journalism and there would be no language issues to deal with, so perhaps more opportunity to interact with people in her field.

OTOH, how likely is it that she would ever again have the opportunity to spend that much time in such a glorious country as Italy and speak another language? That experience might open up opportunities later.

One DD choose places to study where she had to learn another language and has gotten jobs in several countries because she speaks several languages, so any time a person can improve language skills, I think they are ahead of the game in any field.

For that reason, I would choose Rome.
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 04:12 PM
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OK, I do see some presumptions. FYI, there are study-abroad programs in journalism conducted in Rome. FYI, there are programs in Rome with classes conducted entirely in English. FYI, many students are doing a study-abroad program because they want to experience another culture (mostly outside of classes) AND continue studies in their major AND get credit for those studies. Fun is optional but encouraged.

Often, however, these programs are much more expensive than the tuition being paid for the same time period at home. For that reason, I can understand wanting to choose the "best" overall experience. For the academic perspective, your daughter would get the best info from an advisor or counselor in her school and/or the study abroad program. For the cultural perspective, you'd have to ask your daughter which country/city appeals to her more. My perspective? I'd rather spend the winter in Rome than London.
Jean is offline  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 06:12 PM
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I would try to get some info on the places she will be attending classes - how are they rated? Will all her credits be transferable?

She definitely should speak with students at her school who have been at each one. And if she decides to go to Rome she should start studying Italian now - if she hasn't already.

(Some of these "semesters" are really just a party. The daughter of a neighbor did a program in Paris - and came back knowing about 5 words of French - since she just spend the whole time partying with other american students there.)
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 09:44 PM
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Why on earth would someone think that journalism schools don't offer opps to study abroad? Here are examples from one school:

FWIW, many j-school students have dual majors and even if their semester abroad isn't comms focused, the programs can still be valuable for their other major, esp if it's related to languages, history, art, design, literature, political science, or business.
WeisserTee is online now  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 11:35 PM
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It's an increasing trend all over the world for universities to offer courses in English, because they are trying to attract international students from all over the world, and English is the language they have in common. So if the poster's daughter is taking English-language courses in Rome, that does not mean she is being sequestered with just American students (you'd have to know more about the program to say if that's the case).

I'd lean more towards Rome, but I'm not sure if that's the best choice from a future career standpoint. A lovely dilemma, though.
WillTravel is offline  
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Sep 22nd, 2014, 11:36 PM
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I assume the girl comes from an English speaking country and is more interested in journalism than having fun. I would choose London as there no language issues, there are more opportunities for work in London and generally speaking I have more faith in British journalism than Italian one.

It is correct to also consider such a semester as a way to learn a language and broaden her interests. But in this case I would consider a destination in a Spanish speaking country - say Madrid - as it would open the opportunity of understanding a larger chunk of the world. Or in China if she is really ambitious. Italy as a study destination makes sense for opera, design and fashion, art history, Catholic theology; much less for journalism.
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Sep 23rd, 2014, 05:35 AM
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I know that Temple University has journalism/media programs in several cities, including London. You can also find a list of more programs at studyabroad.com--here is a link to a listing of journalism media study abroad programs: http://tinyurl.com/le9xqlv

Of course, you would have to check on the quality of the programs and whether they are accredited and whether your own university will accept transfer credits from the program. So, you will really want to work with advisors (study abroad advisors, hopefully) at your daughter's school.
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Sep 23rd, 2014, 06:12 AM
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Most semesters abroad are designed to give the student a lot of free time to know the country where the school resides and visiting other countries. Of course the schools will not admit that the classes are almost secondary.

Semesters abroad have become de rigueur for many schools to attract kids. So it is not as much as the education as it is the country. My niece was a journalism undergrad and then went to graduate school at Columbia School of Journalism. Her semester abroad in Florence had little effect.

No one is going to learn a foreign language in three months, let alone be at level to communicate as a journalist. If it was my choice, I would choose Rome. American culture is infused with English history, while the Roman influence is evident it is not as obvious. Besides the food is 1,000% better and I love gelati.
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Oct 1st, 2014, 09:57 AM
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As a PR professional, I'd recommend London. It's a tremendous media-rich opportunity and London is a great base to use as a springboard for the rest of Europe. Most PR/journalism schools include study abroad opportunities anyhow, so she will have the best of many worlds. (Relatively) low-cost airline fares hub through London, too, so when important events are happening just about anyplace in Europe, she could get there quickly to be a part of it -- whether it would be a formal part of her studies or not.
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Oct 1st, 2014, 11:33 AM
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Shouldn't the daughter be the one posting this question?
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