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  • Locations: Rome, Italy
  • Program Terms: Spring Quarter
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Program Information:
sociology italy
 Location Rome, Italy
Spring Quarter
March 27 – June 2, 2017
 Estimated    Program Fee $7,700
 Credits 15 UW credits
 Prerequisites None
 Program      Directors Kevin Craft; Katharine Ogle; Bridget Norquist
 Program Manager Darielle Horsey |
 Application    Deadline November 15, 2016
 Information  Session(s) Contact Program Director for more information.
  General The ideal participants for this program will be interested in creative writing and the humanities, exploring Rome with a writer’s curiosity and a traveler’s adaptable, good nature.
Where You Will Study
Expenses, Financial Aid, & Scholarships
  Visas This country is part of the Schengen area. Please click here to learn more about important rules and restrictions for foreign visitors to this area.

Program Description

Caput Mundi: Where All Roads Lead

JOIN a band of ink-stained wayfarers for a Mediterranean spring full of walk, talk, and literary comradeship in and about the Eternal City. As readers, we’ll consider the words and thoughts of novelists, poets and sundry quill-drivers who followed that road before us. As writers, we'll put ourselves in their shoes, pounding the cobbles daily, notebooks in hand. In addition to art and architecture, we’ll explore the natural history of an ancient environment that set the conditions for Rome to become Rome, the world’s first multicultural nation-state.

If one figures the imagination of the West as a spectrum whose color-bands are the academic disciplines, Rome is the prism before the scatter. Here science and art, language and literature, history and geography, the color and vagary and sensate onslaught of contemporary life all constellate in the literary imagination. All this is fair game for us. Writers are dedicated generalists, interested in everything. Like barbarians, they’re rapacious and interdisciplinary. Like barbarians, they ask what can we carry away? We'll test that question at the point of the pencil, transmute what we see, and so sack Rome.

Led by English Department faculty Kevin Craft and Katharine Ogle, the program offers 15 credits in English and Creative Writing (see course descriptions below).

We welcome all students. No experience in literary analysis or creative writing is presumed. Classes will held at the University of Washington Rome Center at the 17th-century Palazzo Pio, situated in the vibrant center of the city’s historical district, as well as out and about in the city itself. A number of field trips, museum visits, and excursions will also be included in the program fee. Housing will be in shared apartments arranged by the UW Rome Center.


Rome, Italy


Etruria: Cerveteri & Tarquinia (Day Trip); Hadrian’s Villa & Tivoli (Day Trip); Ostia Antica (Day Trip)


Shared apartments, housing selected by the UW Rome Center


Pre-Requisites/Language Requirements

Rules of Engagement: • Pluck, good humor, and a spirited willingness to suffer minor inconveniences in the interest of the greater adventure. • Good shoes and stamina: Rome is best negotiated on foot. We’ll do a great deal of walking—occasionally, miles of it—over cobbled streets and occasionally rougher terrain. • Intellectual and imaginative commitment: Robert Frost called Poetry play for mortal stakes, and that’s how we see our collaboration in Rome. Not Roman Holiday; rather, the experience of a lifetime: joyful, serious, intense in every way. • No knowledge of Italian is presumed or required. Some basic language instruction will be offered during the course of the program to help students communicate in the city, though English is usually sufficient.

In reviewing applications, we’ll be most interested in imaginative nerve and personal adaptability. As noted, this is an intensive program designed for generalists. That noted, experienced literature and creative writing students will be engaged at an appropriately advanced level.

Students in the program will maintain their University of Washington residency and any financial aid eligibility they have already established. Credits earned will be recorded on students' UW transcripts and will apply directly to UW graduation requirements. Credits earned in English courses may be used to satisfy requirements in the English Language and Literature and Creative Writing pathways.

Previous creative writing experience is not required. Knowledge of Italian is not required.

Rome is best negotiated on foot. We’ll do a great deal of walking—occasionally, miles of it—over cobbled streets and sometimes (on some field trips) rougher terrain.


15 Credits


ENGL 493 (5 credits): Writing Rome

Though no prior experience in creative writing is presumed and a wide range is anticipated, the class will scale to respective students’ abilities, and prove demanding at all levels. We’ll offer rigorous review of the technical elements of literary composition, prescribe practice, and experience for ten weeks what it means to carry one’s mind as an artist. The famous monuments and cultural treasury of the city will serve as laboratory benches. Our many experiments— writing to prompt— will throw light (if sometimes also inky smoke) back across the sights we’ve seen, and fill a portfolio you’ll find on your shelf a quarter-century from now.

Learning Goals: 

The learning goals of this class include learning how to experience the world as a writer by noting daily observations of the world in a writing journal and learning how to use daily observations to open lines of inquiry. Students will also practice transforming daily “sensory” observations of the world into literary forms like poems, short stories, and short creative nonfiction. Goals will be assessed by tracking student participation in daily activities, listening to daily observations in “workshop”, and by evaluating final student portfolios.

ENGL 395 (5 credits): Reading Rome

We write, therefore we read; the practices are interdependent. In this class we’ll read from a writerly perspective. Taking inspiration from literary figures who’ve besieged the city before us, we’ll make acquaintance with Roman literati, citizens and expatriates alike. Our course packet includes excerpts (in translation) from the ancient and medieval worlds, including Ovid, Virgil, Horace, Juvenal, Catullus, Petrarch, and Dante. Closer to home, we’ll dip our ladles into literary wells with Edith Wharton, Henry James, E.M. Forster, Eugenio Montale, Charles Wright, Richard Wilbur, Elena Ferrante, among others. We’ll greet Keats near the Spanish steps at the beginning of our travels and at the Protestant cemetery near the end. We’ll practice his notion of “negative capability” throughout.

Learning Goals: 

The learning goals of this course are to deepen student understanding of Rome’s great poets, writers, and historians (local and foreign), and to demonstrate how these writers shape modern, post-modern and contemporary American and European attitudes toward Rome. The goals of this course will be assessed by tracking student participation in daily activities and by evaluating student presentations on Rome’s poets,

ENGL 363 (5 credits): Nature and Culture in Rome and Environments

Phase One: This course will begin with survival instruction in conversational Italian. It will feature guest experts in art, architecture, archaeology, history, literary translation, and other facets of Roman intellectual life and culture. It proposes several field trips, including a hill-town to the north, a city of the dead, and an ancient port city by the Tyrrhenian Sea. Phase Two: What does it mean to think like a scientist? What are those little birds streaking against the ocher walls of that palazzo, nesting in its cornices? What is the natural history of a gryphon? For hundreds of years before its archaeological excavation in modern times, the ruined Colosseum was a wilderness of exotic flora and fauna, residual of the African, European and Asian animal trades serving the Roman games. Those blood sports are long gone, but ecologies continue to flourish and change without them. Any environment, urban ones included, may be seen by the light of natural science. This class means to do so in Rome and the regions our field trips touch.

Learning Goals: 

The learning goals of this course are to deepen student understanding of art, architecture, history, natural history, and culture in Rome and to demonstrate how these areas undergird modern, post-modern and contemporary American and European literature. The goals of this course will be assessed by tracking student participation in daily activities and by evaluating student presentations on Roman art, architecture, history, and/or culture, along with the journal entries mentioned in “Writing Rome,” adapted to a naturalist’s perspective.

Program Directors & Staff

Kevin Craft, Department of English, Program Director

Kevin Craft has been teaching for the UW Creative Writing in Rome program since 1998, and became a co-director in 2003. He received a Bachelor of Arts in both English and French from the University of Maryland, and a Master of Fine Arts in English from the University of Washington. He also studied drama at the University of Sheffield, in Great Britain, and Romance languages at the Université de Perpignan, in France. His first book, Solar Prominence (2005), was selected by Vern Rutsala for the Gorsline Prize from Cloudbank Books. His poems, reviews, and essays have appeared widely in such places as Poetry, AGNI, Verse, Alaska Quarterly Review, The Stranger, and West Branch. He has been awarded fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Bogliasco Foundation (Italy), the Camargo Foundation (France), 4Culture, and Artist Trust. Kevin is the current Editor of Poetry Northwest, the region's oldest literary magazine. He is also the Written Arts Coordinator at Everett Community College, where he has taught English and Creative Writing since 1996. He believes that poems, like good travelers, live in the go-between.

Katharine Ogle, Department of English, Program Faculty

Katharine Ogle has participated in the UW Creative Writing program in Rome as a student and as an instructor. She received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Virginia in English Literature and Poetry Writing, and a Master of Fine Arts in Poetry from the University of Washington. She is the writer-in-residence at West Seattle High School and was awarded the 2013 Made at the Hugo House fellowship. She works as an editor at Poetry Northwest and as a teaching fellow for the University of Washington.


Program Expenses

Cost: $7,700

Estimated Program Fee of $7,700, the UW Study Abroad Fee ($350), airfare, food (about $40/day), UW Study Abroad Insurance ($62/month), other health expenses/immunizations and personal spending money.

Average Airplane Ticket Price

$1,200 - $1,800* roundtrip

*Subject to when & where you buy your ticket

Payment Schedule

Program fees will be posted to your MyUW student account and can be paid the same way that you pay tuition and other fees. Check your MyUW Account periodically for due dates.

Payment Type Payment Amount Payment Due Date
Non-Refundable Study Abroad Fee $350 April 14, 2017
Program Fee Balance $7,700 April 14, 2017


To be eligible to study abroad, all program participants must attend an in-person pre-departure orientation facilitated by the Study Abroad office as well as your program-specific orientations, offered by your program director.

You must register for orientation through your online study abroad account in order to attend scheduled orientations. You can visit the Orientation section of our website to view the current orientation schedule.

Orientation must be completed prior to the enrollment deadline for the quarter that you are studying abroad.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Most forms of financial aid can be applied to study abroad. You can verify that your financial aid award will apply to your program costs by contacting the Financial Aid Office. Financial aid or scholarships awarded as tuition waivers or tuition exemptions might not apply so you will need to verify that these funds are eligible for use with study abroad by contacting the funding office.

Financial aid and most scholarships are disbursed according to the UW academic calendar (at the beginning of the quarter). If your program starts before the start of the UW quarter, your financial aid will not be available to you prior to your departure. If your program starts after the first day of the quarter, your financial aid will be disbursed at the start of the program. In either of these cases, you will have to finance any upfront costs such as airfare, health insurance and the start of your time abroad on your own. Please take this into consideration when you are making plans.

Revision Request

In some instances you may qualify for an increase in your financial aid award (typically in loan funds). Check with the Financial Aid Office about your options. To request a revision in your aid, you will need to submit the following paperwork to the Financial Aid Office:

  1. Revision Request Form
  2. Budget of student expenses for your program: The UW Study Abroad Office will upload this budget to your study abroad account after a signed contract has been submitted to the UW Study Abroad Office. You can request an unofficial copy of this budget by emailing

Visit the Finances section of our website to learn more about disbursement, revising your aid package, short-term loans and scholarships.

Application Process

The application includes a Personal Statement, three short answer questions, one to two recommendations from a professor or TA, and electronic signature documents related to UW policies and expectations for study abroad. Following the on-line application process students may be contacted by the Program Director for an in-person interview. Once an admission decision has been made regarding your application, you will be notified by the study abroad system via email.


UW Study Abroad is not responsible for obtaining visas for study abroad program participants. The cost and requirements for obtaining visas vary. It is your responsibility to determine visa requirements for all countries you plan to visit while abroad including countries that you plan to visit before or after your study abroad program. You can do so by calling the consular offices of those countries or checking the following website:

Note: If you are not a U.S. citizen, consult the embassy or consulate of the countries you will visit to learn their document requirements. You can check the following website to find contact information for the consulate of the country you will be visiting:

For non-U.S. citizens, the procedures that you will need to follow may be different than those for U.S. citizens. It is important to initiate this process as soon as possible in order to assemble documents and allow time for lengthy procedures.

Disability Accommodations

The University of Washington is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, and education for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodation for this program, contact Disability Resources for Students at least 8 weeks in advance of your departure date. Contact info at


$350 of the total program fee and the $350 UW Study Abroad Fee are non-refundable and non-revocable once a contract has been submitted, even if you withdraw from the program. Students withdrawing from a program are responsible for paying a percentage of the program fee depending on the date of withdrawal. More details about the withdrawal policy are included in your payment contract. No part of the program fee is refundable once the program has begun. The date of withdrawal is considered the date (business day) a withdrawal form is received by the UW Study Abroad Office. Notice of withdrawal from the program must be made in writing by completing the following steps:

1. Provide notice in writing to the Program Director that you will no longer be participating in the program for which you have signed a contract and accepted a slot.

2. Submit a signed withdrawal form to the UW Study Abroad Office, 459 Schmitz Hall.

Visit the Withdrawals section of our website for more information.