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Thematic Short Programs



Auburn University


May – June, 2020 (Exact dates TBA)




Rome, Italy


The program is open only to students from Auburn University



Students will learn about the health benefits associated with consumption of the Mediterranean Diet and be provided an opportunity to participate in a field based learning experience on the Mediterranean Diet in Italy.

This summer term program is designed, promoted and managed by the GLi and Auburn University. Language Courses provider: Scuola Leonardo da Vinci Rome.



  • COURSES OFFERED: Auburn university students should contact Dr. Michael Greene at Auburn University or visit Auburn Office of International Programs
  • CREDITS: Auburn university students should contact Dr. Michael Greene at Auburn University.
  • COST: Costs are available by contacting the Auburn University Office of International Programs or by contacting Dr. Michael Greene.
  • PROGRAM SUPERVISORS: Dr. Sonia Massari, GLi Academic and Programs Director in Rome; Dr. Michael Greene, Assistant Professor of Nutrition, College of Human Sciences, Auburn University and Faculty leader for the program on the Mediterranean Diet.
  • HOW TO APPLY: Auburn University students should contact Dr. Michael Greene at Auburn University.


GLi welcomes inquiries about our custom programs and our open-enrollment study programs. We also welcome visitors to our programs in Italy. Please let us know if you would like to visit us and, perhaps, to sit in on a class or field trip. Also let us know if you would like detailed descriptions of current or past courses. To arrange a site visit Contact Us with dates and the number of people in your party. 


In our programs, students partake in “Food Study Tours,” a series of lessons and visits that provide direct knowledge of food production. These formative opportunities are a form of experiential learning that permit our future food studies experts to gain knowledge in the field, using all five of their senses. They can talk directly with those who work right within the production chain, accessing people who know about sustainability and biodiversity. Our study tours are based on the idea that food studies should teach the scientific aspects of food, such as nutrition and chemical composition, but it is also necessary to incorporate a component of direct experience into the learning process, highlighting activities that allow an interactive experience within the territory. The student gains knowledge by traveling, seeing the manufacturing processes, the varied gastronomic cultures, the wide spectrum of raw materials, their transformations, and the modes and styles of consumption. To learn, one travels. Through travel, one can come to know diverse customs, cultures, languages, religions, and traditions. It’s possible to enrich one’s cultural capital through a small adventure. Every trip leaves a mark and transforms us, enlarges our perspective and our awareness. Each journey makes us look at things with new eyes, often from a more objective view. We have two types of Food Study tours:

  • thematic trips can last from 3 hours to an entire day. These frequent tours are aimed at providing information about a specific product. Students deepen their knowledge about the chosen product while in the classroom and then enhance their understanding of it outside the classroom by personally seeing the production chain of that individual product.
  • tours of the territory can last 2 to 15 days. The objective is to provide the student with a cultural and gastronomic understanding of how the product is connected to the territory or the region and at the same time recount the history and the culture of ingredients.

Some sample tours:

  • 2-3 days discovering the Mediterranean diet (in Cilento or in Puglia)
  • 7 days in Italy’s South from Campania to Sicilia
  • 4 days of music and food, “Giuseppe Verdi, his food and his land (in the Emilia Romagna region)
  • 4 days of food and traditions in Calabria
  • Food Study Tours can be comprised of many activities:– academic lectures and special meetings with local instructors, historians and experts in the food field – visits with producers, businesses, agricultural companies, farms, manufacturing plants, artisan workshops, research centers, restaurateurs, and other destinations in the food and wine sectors – cooking classes, fishing trips, fruit or vegetable harvests – cultural visits to explore the territory – outings to traditional markets. The design of individual tours is under the direction of GL International, experts in academic curriculum. Our high level educational tours are not for “tourists.” An important figure during the tour is the tutor, a point person who accompanies the students on this educational trajectory. After the completion of a Food Study Tour that forms part of an academic program (short or long), students develop projects that allow them to share their experiences, via various mediums: papers, articles, videos, photographic presentations, etc.

Would you like to see other testimonials from alumni? Read more ›

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