BA in Italian Studies

Declare your BA in Italian studies today!

At the University of Minnesota, a BA in Italian studies provides a strong interdisciplinary approach to and understanding of Italian and Italian-American literature, culture, society, and history. Courses offer a literary, historical, and cultural perspective from the Middle Ages to the present. You can explore a variety of issues and themes ranging from the formation of city-states to contemporary questions of national identity, from issues of immigration and emigration to questions of travel and cultural exchange, from gender relations to the study of different narrative and film representations of Italian and Italian-American culture.

Careers in several different industries have been grounded in an Italian studies major at the University, including:

  • fashion, film, art and art restoration, music, architecture, or design
  • international business or diplomacy
  • tourism
  • culinary arts
  • agricultural development
  • education and research

The World Bank (2014) reported that Italy had the world’s eighth-largest economy. Italy’s economic strength stems from a strong creative impulse, from Leonardo da Vinci to Versace.

While everyone recognizes Italy’s pre-eminence in the arts (UNESCO’s World Heritage List identifies Italy as home to 51 sites—more than any other country in the world), some Americans don’t know Italy’s long, successful tradition in international trade. Its location on a peninsula in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea encouraged the early development of business technologies, giving it a head start that still makes it a leader today (the GDP was over $2 trillion in 2014).

Moreover, Rome, Italy’s capital, is home to many non-governmental organizations (NGOs) specializing in development, in such areas as food security and landscape conservation.

An Italian major at Minnesota begins with language study using the latest technology (students are assigned an online language partner in an Italian school) and extends to courses in the many University departments with faculty focusing on Italian culture and history. These big horizons do not indicate a loss of intimacy, though.  The program is small enough that majors soon get to know all three professors and five language teaching specialists.

Sign up for Italian language classes, find a home base, and explore your future through an Italian major!