Global Learning students give thanks in Florence, Italy

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For many students who take part in Lipscomb University’s Global Learning program, they spend a full semester immersed in other cultures. ThanksItaly_Food

This Thanksgiving, students in the fall 2018 trip to Florence, Italy found a way to share their own culture with the locals. 

Across the street from the Lipscomb property in Florence is local restaurant, the Taverna degli Assi. Emily Woodroof, resident director of the Lipscomb campus in Florence, said the University has developed a relationship with the restaurant staff who have always treated the students with care and consideration. In light of this kindness, Woodroof was thrilled when the restaurant managers asked if the students would like to prepare an American meal for them.

“We decided that it would be a neat opportunity to serve them and show how grateful we are for all that they do for us,” said Woodroof.

In the spirit of gratitude, the group presented a full Thanksgiving meal to their friends.

The menu consisted of turkey, ham, sweet potato casserole, corn, mashed potatoes, gravy, mac ‘n’ cheese, peas and carrots, and dressing with apple crisp, Jello fruit salad, and pumpkin cheesecake for dessert. To complete the American experience, the students served two full pitchers of Southern sweet tea.ThanksItaly_Turkey

The meal was served on a Monday, when the Taverna degli Assi is closed, and students used the restaurant kitchen. The students divvied up the tasks, with the choice to cook, serve, set the table, or clean up. Woodroof’s parents and grandmother had flown into Italy the day before and oversaw most of the cooking. After the meal Woodroof’s father explained the significance of the holiday and led the students and restaurant staff in a prayer.

“About 10 of the staff and the two managers were all there, on their day off, in order to share this experience with us,” said Woodroof. “Everyone was stuffed and both the Italians and the students absolutely loved the experience.”

To learn more about Lipscomb University’s study abroad options visit