Rachael - Bocconi University

B Business Management/Arts
Semester 2, 2019
The most eye-opening, fun, life changing and difficult experience of your life that you won't regret anything in the end.

Academic experience

Bocconi University provided a lot of diverse subjects, where I studied Islam and Politics, Human Rights, Economics (poverty, inequality and income distribution), Public Management and Management of International and Supranational Organisations. The academic system was very different to the University of Queensland, with limited access to help desks and a lot of independent research and information needed. There are no tutorials, only Lecturers twice a week in much smaller classes. The work load was a lot more than at UQ, but a good group of friends makes it a lot easier. Assessment is not like UQ at all, it is mainly 100% finals, with the option to resit if you don't pass (strange, I know). Assignments were minimal, if any but the option for additional points to your grade are available.

Personal experience

I made valuable friendships with fellow Australians and New Zealanders at Bocconi and in Milan. Further, living in an apartment with 7 other people made the experience a lot better to get to know new people. I travelling every weekend between classes (if I didn't have to study). Travelling is really easy, especially with the ERASMUS card which you can get at the start of the semester. I did the language course, but did not learn anything of use. Personally, I developed a lot of a person, became more independent, confident and adventurous. Exchange was well worth everything it entails.


I lived off campus, after reading other reviews and I couldn't recommend it more. I lived in an apartment near the university with 7 other people from all around the world, it was incredible and I have made life long friends from it. Would definitely not recommend living on campus, the people at Bocconi did not have anything nice to say about the on-campus living and wished they had done as I had.


Milan is expensive, but that is what you get when you go to Milan. Rent for a relatively small room in Porta Romana was nearly 800 euros a month (you can find cheaper, but the rooms get smaller). Grocery shopping can be super expensive if you shop at Pam or Carrefour, but a weekly trip out of the super inner city to Esselunga is well worth it, even food markets during the week are worth the savings. The ATM card, is the transport card for Milan and would definitely recommend. It costs around 24 euro a month for unlimited travel. Entertainment including clubbing and the movies costs around 20 euros for entry or the ticket to the movie.


The biggest challenge to this experience was the language issue. Not speaking Italian was extremely difficult and the people of Milan are not accepting of non-Italian speaking people. Get ready for that. Any effort to speak italian will be met with apprehension or rudeness, but apparently that is normal so you get use to it.

Professional Development

I learnt how to integrate into a new culture and communicate with those who do not speak English. I grew a lot in confidence and independence, especially doing bureaucratic things in Milan (you do a lot).


The highlight of my experience was the people that I met. Every person changed me in so many ways and helped me grow as a person. But ultimately living in Milan is one of the greatest things I have ever experienced, it is so beautiful, you will never get over how beautiful Duomo is and the city streets. Milan is beautiful.

Top tips

My top tip to you is pick the right subjects if you come to Bocconi. Bocconi is a prestigious university that does not make easy subjects for anyone. You need to understand that and pick subject accordingly. I made a mistake and had extremely difficult subjects, but certain subjects are more accepting and adaptable to exchange students. Be aware of this, I cannot stress this enough.