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Department of Modern Languages
The University of Mississippi


Italian Program

Why Study Italian?

Italian is one of the most studied language in the world and the fourth most studied language in US colleges and high schools.

By taking Italian, students will have the possibility of becoming more familiar with a culture that produced some of the greatest creative geniuses in the history of Western civilization. From Dante and Machiavelli, to Leonardo da Vinci and Galileo, Italians have made significant contributions to our culture. Anyone interested in pursuing a career in music, art, international relations, journalism, literature, or travel and tourism should seriously consider Italian as a language with a variety of opportunities for study and employment.

Some good reasons to take Italian:

  • Art and Culture
  • Music and theater
  • International Studies
  • Jobs in Government
  • Fashion and design
  • Academic job
  • Scholarly research
  • Jobs in Business
  • Self-Fulfillment
  • Intellectual Stimulation
  • Communication skills
  • Travel and food

The University of Mississippi offers an undergraduate minor in Italian. The Department of Modern Languages offers elementary, intermediate and advanced Italian courses that emphasize the language and culture of Italy. Students may study Italian in order to fulfill their Liberal Arts language requirement. The minor in Italian requires the completion of 15 hours of Italian courses, beyond the 100 level (i.e., 200-, 300-, 400- or 500-level courses). Credit may be earned for studying Italian in Italy, and the Director of Italian will help students in selecting an outstanding program.

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Degree Requirements

Student Resources


Extracurricular Activities

Italian Table (la Tavola Italiana) 

Our bimonthly informal conversation group: Practice your Italian, meet new friends, caffeinate your body, and exercise your mind!

— First and third Tuesday 12:00p-1:00p @ the Residential College

Italian Club (il Club Italiano)

The Italian Club organizes several cultural activities throughout the semester, open to all students. Here are some activities:

Presentations on Italian culture aspects and discussion

Workshops: Italian gestures, food demonstrations, etc.

Italian games: game board, card games, bocce tournament

• Italian through songs and movies

• Annual Talent Show

• Italian Movie nights

For more information, contact Dr. Elisa Modolo.

Study Abroad

Go Away! We encourage all our students to immerse themselves in the study abroad experience. The Italian Faculty-led Program offers the possibility of learning the Italian language in Salerno (South-Italy), with an intensive program on the beautiful Amalfi Coast.

In Salerno students are accommodated in selected host families and enjoy the traditional and real-life setting, practicing the language and tasting the delicious local food (mozzarella, pizza, pasta, etc.). Students experience the sea, History, Art, Music, ceramics, cooking and enjoy on-site guided tours to many beautiful destinations: Amalfi Coast, Pompeii, Paestum, Naples.

Contact The Study Abroad Office for details.

Gamma Kappa Alpha Italian Honor Society

Gamma Kappa Alpha, the National Collegiate Italian Honor Society, is devoted exclusively to students of Italian in four-year colleges and universities. In the Department of Modern Languages, our chapter of Gamma Kappa Alpha recognizes outstanding achievement in Italian among students at the University of Mississippi.

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The Italian faculty at the Department of Modern Languages consists of one tenure-track professor, one instructional professor, and two instructors whose expertises include Italian Pedagogical Approaches to the Teaching of Italian as a Second Language, Medieval Italian Literature and Manuscript Studies, Italian Renaissance, Modern and Contemporary Italian Poetry, 20th and 21st century Italian literature and film, and Comparative Studies.

Our Italian classes feature low faculty-to-student ratios allowing students to work closely with the Italian faculty.

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Contact Information

Director of the Italian Program
Valerio Cappozzo, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Italian
Howry 207

Director of Basic Language Instruction (100 & 200 Level Italian)
Elisa Modolo, Ph.D.  Instructional Assistant Professor of Italian
Bondurant E206

Mariagrazia Palmitesta Instructor in Italian
Bondurant E213

Italian Coast

Financial Assistance

Scholarships, fellowships, and assistantships help many students study Italian. Modern Languages awards scholarships to students of Italianthe College of Liberal Arts awards additional scholarships, and other financial support is available from the Office of Financial Aid.