International Spotlight: Danielle Waye

February 14, 2012 § Leave a comment


Culture, style, design and tradition describe [4th] year student Danielle Waye’s experience in Florence, Italy, in the Fall of 2011. Before studying in Florence, she visited Tuscany, while her sister attended New York University’s Italy campus. Danielle knew after that moment that she, “had to go to school in Florence..it really was eye-opening to see such a beautiful place I’ve only ever heard about”. Italy was also a perfect match for her since she took Italian, and it would give her easy access for traveling in Europe.  She specifically chose Florence, because she had always admired the city’s distinct architectural style.

With the city at her dispense, she took no time settling into life as an “Italian”. “One of the greatest things about living in my flat was that I was only a five minute walk from the Duomo… it seemed unreal”, Danielle says. With a five room apartment in the city, she felt that she had a great living experience. Danielle expressed, “Being in an apartment  that was mainly locals was really exciting because I got to interact with them and learn about their culture and lifestyle”. A day in the Danielle’s “Italian life” brings inspiration. She frequented museums and local restaurants, in addition to previewing high-end retail and fashion designs. Her favorite thing to see however was, “. . . the architecture that was well-preserved and more intricate than I could have ever imagined”.

Danielle beheld the built environment, as well as, the natural beauty during all her travels throughout Europe. She revealed that her favorite trip, the Amalfi Coast in southern Italy, provided crystal clear waters and plunging cliffs. If that wasn’t enough, she went on boat excursions and swam in the Blue Grotto. One of her cultural events of choice was Oktoberfest in Germany. Experiencing the German way of life and their traditional attire was a treat.

With all of these amazing experiences, it’s hard to imagine how to stay focused on school. Daniellemstill found time to successfully pursue her school work. Not only did she make valuable design connections with the people she worked with, she also discovered her own style. The most important principle she found was, “It’s about loving what you do, not just getting it done”. She really appreciated the Italian work ethic and design style, which she incorporates into her work now.

Just like my previous interviews with study abroad students, I also asked Danielle why she thinks others should engage in international studies. She replied with, “It opens up so many doors and possibilities . . . it expands what you think is possible as a person, a designer, and in life”.

Contributed by Kelsey Rhode [4th] year, Photos by Danielle Waye

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