ACCENT Community College Scholarship: Discovering the Beauty of Rome

Today, we check back in with ACCENT Community College Scholarship recipient Jessica Nichol, who, in her wanderings, has discovered many amazing things about Rome and about herself.

There is an ancient world below Rome that is being uncovered bit by bit every day. My new Italian friend told me that it is impossible to simply put up a new building or house because they will certainly find something of the past and have to call in archaeologists to assess the site. However, I am learning that modern Rome has just as many discoveries to be made as the world below it.

As I walk along the streets of Rome, my nose takes me down an alley and I find a new trattoria that makes homemade pasta and I need to try some. As I leave, belly full, I hear people talking in their native language and find that I am now able to pick up some of the new words. I continue walking and I see an old church opening its doors, waiting to be entered. I walk in and find beautiful art covering every inch of the interior.

Outside, Rome teems with beauty—in the language, the food, and the culture. Its beauty can be found hidden behind big wooden doors of old churches, such as this one, memorializing the past by displaying how long they have been there. I walk out of the church, heart full, and hop on the tram to take me home.

While there are so many wonderful things to discover in Rome, the biggest discoveries I have made have been about myself. I have learned that I am brave, adventurous, curious, loving, and much more. Since arriving in Rome I have been changing as a person and the people around me are all changing as well. There are things to be discovered all around but the biggest thing I have been discovering is myself and who I am as a person in this great big world. I am so glad I had the opportunity to not only explore a new city but also explore within myself. I may have been physically lost in this beautiful city, but all the while, I have been finding a new part of myself and I love it. Thank you, Rome.~Jessica Nichol, Santa Barbara City College

ACCENT is proud to support the Community College Scholarship as part of our commitment pledge to IIE Generation Study Abroad, a nationwide effort to help more U.S. students gain international experience through study abroad programs.