Student Spotlight: Ryan Fontanesi

Perché voglio imparare l’italiano?

When I was ten, I had the opportunity to travel to Italy. My nonno had planned a grand vacation that promised to be a cultural experience of a lifetime: three generations of Fontanesis travelling the country from Rome to Milan. It was one of the most memorable weeks of my life. In the weeks leading up to the trip, I learned as many Italian phrases I could remember at that age, and picked up a few more while I was there. In the following years however, I quickly forgot anything I had learned, and always wished I could pick it up again.

Ryan and family in Rome

Ryan and family in Rome

Italian culture has been an important part of my life. Growing up, every Christmas meant rolling out pasta for cappelletti with Nonno, or helping Bisnonna make gnocchi.

Ryan and family in Tuscany

Ryan and family in Tuscany

Since I moved to Salt Lake, I’ve looked for a way to reconnect with this aspect of life. So when a friend invited me to the Italian Festival, I jumped at the opportunity. That’s where I discovered the Italian Club of Salt Lake and learned about the Italian language classes they offer. I signed up for the beginning course and quickly learned the joy of learning the Italian language. Italian has a lyrical quality unlike any other language I’ve experienced that makes it fun to learn and practice.

Ryan (left) attending an Italian opera with other members of the club

Ryan (left) attending an Italian opera with other members of the club

The Italian Club of Salt Lake has been a great environment to develop the language, with both novice and native speakers alike. Italian class has easily become the most looked forward to event of my week. The teachers have provided great help and encouragement on the road to fluency. I can’t wait to plan another trip to Italy. This time I’ll be the guide and get to use the phrases and lessons I’m learning today.

What do you think?

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