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  • Locations: Florence, Italy; San Casciano in Val di Pesa, Italy; Talamone, Italy
  • Program Terms: Spring - Short Term
  • Restrictions: SU applicants only
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Program Description:

NSD 452/652: Mediterranean Food and Culture: an Italian Experience (3 credits)
Italy Horacek market
Taught in Syracuse during the Spring 2018 semester (Wednesday, 5:15-8:05pm) and in Italy, May 15-May 28, 2018
This course will provide you with an opportunity to experience one of the most renowned cuisines in the world. What is the Mediterranean diet and why do people eat this way? How many ways can we really define the Mediterranean diet, based upon regional and cultural differences? We will investigate the historic, geographic, and socio-economic underpinnings of the Mediterranean diet. We will critique the health benefits and implications of following a Mediterranean diet. We will discuss the current dietary habits of people surrounding the Mediterranean to determine just how closely the Mediterranean diet is being followed. Once in Italy, we will experience the current Mediterranean diet from farm to table by exploring small artisan producers for cheese, olive oil, wine, and pasta. We explore the significance of local/regional production not only from a food system but also from a legislative and labeling perspective. We will work in the fields, shop for the freshest ingredients and cook authentic Italian meals.
This course is open to any SU student who has interest in the interaction between Mediterranean foods, wine, health and culture. For NSD majors or minors, this course can be taken as an alternative to the required NSD 555: Food, Culture and Environment Class offered on campus.
Class size is limited to 16 students. Any graduate student or advanced undergraduate student is eligible to apply. Students who enroll in this course must participate in both the Syracuse and Italy portion of the program. This is not an introductory course; taking NSD 225, Nutrition in Health, or equivalent course first is suggested. The Tuscany/Florence portion of the class requires a lot of walking and vineyard field work.

Tentative Itinerary 2018

Tuesday, May 15th Travel to Italy, on recommended flight or on your own.
Wednesday, May 16th         Arrive in Pisa. Travel to agriturismo La Valentina in Tuscany.
Thursday, May 17th Buffalo Mozzarella cheese tour. Lunch at Antica Fattoria del Grottaine. Olive Press visit.
Friday, May 18th Visit to LaSelva organic farm. Lunch at La Dogana restaurant. Pitigliano and Sorano.
Saturday, May 19th Bike ride to Maremma Regional Natural park/beach. Travel to agriturismo La Ginestra.
Sunday, May 20th Stay at La Ginestra, work (bee care). Truffle hunting.
Monday, May 21st Stay at La Ginestra, work (vineyard).
Tuesday, May 22nd Visit and tour pasta factory Pastificcio Fabbri. Cook dinner with Jacopo in Motespertoli.
Wednesday, May 23rd Cheese and wine tour Corzano and Paterno. Work on far. Make pizza/bread with Matteo.
Thursday, May 24th Visit to Mill in Montespertoli. Wine Museum visit. Wine tasting at Podere Guliani.
Travel to Florence.  Walking tour of Florence and group activity Find it Florence.
Friday, May 25th Mercato Ambrogio with Antonella. Cook with Jacopo at SU Florence.  Florence site visits.
Saturday, May 26th Guided tour of Uffizi Museum. Florence site visits. Final discussion and evaluation.
Sunday, May 27th Free day
Monday, May 28th Students depart for U.S. or independent travel.

Tanya Horacek, Ph.D., R.D. Dr. Horacek is a Professor in the department of Public Health, Food Studies and Nutrition. She teaches upper level/graduate applied dietetics classes (nutrition counseling). Her current research involves the development and validation of a healthy campus environmental audit and randomized treatment control trials using a non-diet approach to weight management. She has a variety of other research projects include eating competence, green eating, participatory program planning, and the effectiveness of lifestyles-oriented nutrition counseling/education. She is passionate about helping students fit a study abroad experience into their program of study. She has broadened her area of study/teaching to include sustainability and a global cultural experience via the Mediterranean Food Culture class. She spent fall 2009 semester living and teaching in Florence and continues to study Italian.

Students register for this 3-credit class during the spring semester. This means that SU undergraduates pay no additional tuition charge for the overseas program, as long as they have not exceeded the 19-credit limit for the semester. Graduate students pay the per-credit tuition charge for this three credit class.

All students will pay a program fee (approximately $2200-2400) for the travel portion of the course, which includes housing, some group meals, ground transportation, and entrance fees. It also includes all activities and services for which a separate fee is not charged. The final fee will be set once expenses have been confirmed. Please note: The fee does not include airfare. Students should budget between $1100-1300 for roundtrip airfare from the US to Italy. Syracuse Abroad will provide information on a recommended flight after students have been accepted.

Application, Selection & Payment Procedures
A completed online application and a $70 non-refundable application fee are due to Syracuse Abroad by October 15, 2017. An admissions committee made up of Professor Horacek and an Syracuse Abroad representative will review all applications. Students will be notified of their acceptance shortly after the due date. Upon acceptance, a $575 non-refundable deposit is required to confirm your participation in the program. The full program fee will be posted to accepted students' bursar accounts on December 15, 2017, and billed alongside Spring 2018 semester charges.

For more information, please contact Kelsey Hanbach: 315-443-9421 or

Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.

This program is currently not accepting applications.