Programs for High Schools

As an American institution of higher education in Rome, John Cabot University promotes interaction between the international academic community and its surroundings. JCU offers cultural resources and educational activities to Italian high school teachers and their students, free of charge.


Under a Framework Agreement with the Italian Ministry of Instruction, Universities and Research, Regional Office for schools in Latium  

Programs for High Schools at JCU logo

This is the suite of programs that JCU offers in English and, free of charge, to the local community of educators.
Students can earn PCTO credits by participating successfully in these programs.

The logo: the box symbolizes the simple, replicable structure of these programs that allows JCU to continue to offer engaging content to students and teachers. The olive branch symbolizes our host country, Italy, and the growth we strive for together.
The JCU logo represents our community, an American liberal arts university in the heart of Rome.


Consult the description of activities, criteria for participation, and deadlines for JCU's Programs for High Schools for PCTO (Percorsi per le Competenze Trasversali e per l'Orientamento, Dlg.107/15,, formerly known as Alternanza Scuola Lavoro (ASL)

Download our brochure.

Teachers register their students for one or more programs using this Unique Registration Form. Using this form, teachers can also request to receive our periodic newsletter about the programs and, upon completion of each program, request PCTO certification for their students. How to Use the Unique Registration Form (in Italian).


Students and teachers at these schools have been involved in one or more of the Programs for High Schools offered by John Cabot University over the past 13 years. All activities are in English and free of charge. Find your school on the map!

Online activities

The content for the programs for PCTO, when online, is delivered using Google Classrooms, Zoom, or Teams. Students and teachers will need to use an email account that allows them to access this platform.

How to Write a Successful CV and Speak in Public 

This program is offered on Google Classrooms and is certifiable for 3-23 hours for PCTO. All material is asynchronous, not in live streaming.

All three sessions are equivalent. Teachers indicate ONE SESSION for their students when registering them. All activities relevant to the session must be concluded before the deadline for each session. 

SESSION I - 10 October - 30 November 
SESSION II - 10 December - 28 February 
SESSION III - 10 March - 30 April 

Teachers can register their students for this program using the Unique Registration Form. You will be asked to upload the list of names of your students in a downloadable Excel template. 

Italy Reads

JCU’s English language reading and cultural exchange program, Italy Reads, now in its 13th year, provides a variety of activities around a work of American literature. Certifiable for 2-100 hours for PCTO. Read about the activities for PCTO with Italy Reads.

Teachers can register their students for Italy Reads using the Unique Registration Form. For more information write to [email protected].

For details and to register for individual events, please see the Calendar of Events page.

Teacher Training Workshop

Keynote Address by Katie Simon, Ph.D. (online)
Master Class with Keynote Address Speaker
Student visits, in-person and online, (JCU Italy Reads Volunteer Mentors and high school students are scheduled from October through December. JCU students meet with high school students to discuss aspects of the book and the author, they also offer guidance in preparing for the Student Video Contest or the Interview and Digital Newsletter Project. 
Teachers can request availability of one or more Italy Reads Volunteer Mentors 

Students Interview Keynote Speaker
Guest Lecture - Indigenous Peoples of Northern America-Then and Now, by Andrea Lanzone
Italy Reads Theatre in collaboration with The English Theatre of Rome

Guest Lecture – Cultural Diversity, by Pilar Murguia
Video Production Workshop/Q&A Session with Roberto Ronzulli

Deadline to enter the Italy Reads Student Video Contest
Professional Development Course for High School Teachers (online) Teaching E.L. Masters’ “Spoon River Anthology” Jan.-May 2023) (applications due by 9 January)

Presentation by students of Digital Newsletters including interviews conducted
Student visits, in-person and online, (JCU Italy Reads Volunteer Mentors and high school students (Feb.- April.). Teachers can request availability of one or more Italy Reads Volunteer Mentors 

Video Contest Award Ceremony

Italy Writes 

Italy Writes is JCU’s national Creative Writing Contest for high school students (scuola secondaria di secondo grado) whose primary language of instruction is NOT English. Since 2010, this contest has encouraged and recognized excellence in students developing their creative voice in the English language. Now available for certification of up to 10 hours for PCTO. JCU will provide resources to teachers interested in guiding their students in structured preparation for the Italy Writes Contest. Teachers can register their students (by Nov. 7) using the Unique Registration Form.

1 March - Deadline to submit entries using this Contest Submission Form. The award ceremony will be held online on May 31. For more information write to [email protected].

Italy Pitches

JCU’s Institute for Entrepreneurship offers this national, English-language pitching competition for Italian high-school students - Italy Pitches. Participating students will be introduced to concepts such as corporate social responsibility (CSR), creating shared value (CSV), and impact investing. They will also learn how to construct an advocacy narrative, and how to translate it visually using digital skills. Completely online and certifiable for 30 hours for PCTO. Students must register through their teacher/PCTO Tutor who will use the Unique Registration Form. Deadline to apply: February 3.

Italy Starts

Italy Starts, a Peer-to-Peer Entrepreneurship Mentoring Program in English. University students (Mentors) volunteer to work with Italian High School Students (Mentees) to solve real business problems or develop business models for their business or social venture idea. This program is aimed at third and fourth-year students enrolled in Italian high schools. It will be conducted online. Certifiable for 40 hours for PCTO.

Students must apply for selection for this program through their teacher/PCTO Tutor who will use the Unique Registration Form. Deadline to apply: April 28. Italy Starts takes place 24 May - 21 June.

Professional Development for Italian High School Teachers

These programs provide professional development opportunities and online resources to teachers and their students. Resources and sample lesson plans are available at Italy Reads Resources for Teachers. This material relevant to the current year is updated as we proceed through the academic year. Material from past editions can be accessed at Italy Reads Archives.

High School Teachers can apply to participate in the Italy Reads 2023-2024 Professional Development Course. The Application Form will be posted here in November. Deadline to apply: January 9.

Italy Reads 2009 - Teaching with Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird
Italy Reads 2010 - Teaching with Thornton Wilder's Our Town
Italy Reads 2011 - Teaching with Carson McCullers's The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter
Italy Reads 2012 - Teaching with F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby 
Italy Reads 2013 - Teaching with Jhumpa Lahiri's The Namesake
Italy Reads 2014 - Teaching with Ernest Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms
Italy Reads 2015 - Teaching with Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye
Italy Reads 2016 - Teaching with Tennessee Williams's The Glass Menagerie
Italy Reads 2017 - Teaching with Emily Dickinson's Selected Poems
Italy Reads 2018 - Teaching with Flannery O'Connor's Short Stories
Italy Reads 2019 - Teaching with Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass
Italy Reads 2020 - Teaching with Rachel Carson's Silent Spring
Italy Reads 2021 - Teaching with William Demby's Beetlecreek
Italy Reads 2022 - Teaching with Margaret Fuller's Summer on the Lakes in 1843

Spring 2018, Information and Misinformation in a Fake News World by Visiting Professor Deanna Lee
Summer 2014, Media Literacy for Teaching English - a workshop for teachers by Professor Antonio Lopez

Percorsi per le Competenze Trasversali e per l'Orientamento (PCTO), formerly Alternanza Scuola Lavoro (ASL)

All of the above-listed programs can satisfy PCTO (Dlg.107/15) requirements for Italian high school students. The following is required:

  • An Agreement for PCTO must be stipulated between JCU and the school. Once the agreement has been signed, the school will appear on the map "Impact of Programs for High Schools with John Cabot University" (see above)
  • The teacher/PCTO Tutor for the school registers their students according to the instructions and deadlines for each program using the Unique Registration Form.
  • When their students have completed each program, the teacher/PCTO Tutor verifies completion of all activities for the program and requests certification using the Unique Registration Form.

For further information about Programs for High Schools at JCU write to [email protected].

Schools across Italy (166) have participated in at least one of the Programs for High Schools, and 107 of these have signed an Agreement with John Cabot University to participate in at least one of the activities offered for PCTO. If your school is not included in the Impact of Programs for High Schools Map above, please write to us at [email protected] as soon as possible.