JFRC launches $12 million campaign
On Saturday, May 8, 2010, at its all-class reunion in Rome, the John Felice Rome Center announced an initiative that will transform its campus and programming, ushering one of the largest American study-abroad centers in Europe into the 21st century. The $12 million campaign will completely renovate the facilities on campus, increase student scholarship support, add student programming, and establish a permanent endowment.
"Almost 50 years ago, John Felice envisioned a permanent American campus in Rome dedicated to horizon-broadening cross-cultural exchange. That dream is becoming a reality, and we are closer than ever to fulfilling its potential," says Michael J. Garanzini, S.J, president, Loyola University Chicago. "This campaign will build an even better Rome Center, one that will offer more opportunities and better facilities to every student who deserves a life-changing stay at the JFRC."
Opened in 1962, the JFRC holds the distinction of being the oldest continual U.S. university program in Italy. Every year, nearly 400 students from dozens of colleges and universities across the United States study at the center's all-inclusive residential campus, which spans five acres in the upper Balduina district of Monte Mario, Rome's highest hill. The JFRC offers an expansive curriculum of more than 40 courses, internships, service projects, and study trips throughout Europe, Asia, and India. The University closed on the purchase of the land and buildings from the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine of Siena on July 1, 2009.
The campaign launch follows other positive developments for JFRC. Those include the recent acquisition of a neighboring olive grove, record enrollment this spring semester, the creation of new academic programs, and an inaugural Board of Trustees meeting to be held at the JFRC in June.
Starting this year, the JFRC campus renovation will be completed within six to eight years and will include improvements that will beautify and better organize the campus, as well as make it more environmentally responsible. Some of the highlights of this transformation will include:
- A new, ultra-modern information commons with technology that will set the JFRC apart from every other American university facility in Europe
- A new auditorium and conference hall that will allow the JFRC to host high-profile conferences and symposiums
- Enhanced community and recreation spaces, including a new outdoor terrace
- Energy-saving enhancements, such as solar panels, that will save the JFRC an estimated 20 percent on energy costs per year
- Private bathrooms for each dormitory room
- New classrooms, fine arts studios, athletic facility, and chapel
"With plans for cutting-edge renovations, 48 years of experience, and 15,000 devoted alumni, the JFRC is positioned to be the best and most comprehensive study-abroad program in Italy," says Vice President and JFRC Director Emilio Iodice. "Those 48 years are a testament to our values and traditions, and we will be ever-mindful of this heritage as we move to provide an even better global experience for our students."