Italy Reads

Calendar of Events

Registration is required for all events. All activities are in English and are online unless otherwise specified. Please return to this page for updates during the academic year. Italy Reads offers opportunities for high school students to acquire valuable experience in the context of Percorsi per le Competenze Trasversali e per l'Orientamento (PCTO) (ex-Alternanza Scuola Lavoro (ASL)).

Each year, nearly 200 teachers and their students participate in Italy Reads or one of the other Programs for High Schools offered free of charge by John Cabot University. Many students earn a significant number of hours for PCTO for their participation in Italy Reads.

See Programs for High Schools or Programmi per le Scuole for more information or contact [email protected].

Italy Reads 2022-2023 Margaret Fuller's Summer on the Lakes in 1843

Teacher Training Workshops (Online), 5:00-7:00pm

Register for the workshop on October 7, 2022
Register for the workshop on October 14, 2022

The Lesson Plans resulting from the Professional Development Course will be presented and discussed at the scheduled Teacher Training Workshops. Teachers of all subjects are welcome. Registration is obligatory.

Teachers who are new to Italy Reads are strongly encouraged to attend one or more workshops to learn more about the book and to ask their colleagues and the Italy Reads team any practical questions about the program. 

All Italy Reads participants are invited to consult the page Italy Reads Resources for Teachers. This collection of resources is compiled each year by the JCU librarians. It includes the presentations of Lesson Plans on the author and the work prepared by JCU professors and by Italy Reads high school teachers who attended the relevant Professional Development Course during the preceding Spring Session.

Keynote Address

18 October, 6:00-7:30pm (Online). This public event is the annual kick-off for the Italy Reads Program. Dr. Simon will discuss Fuller's work from an eco-critical perspective touching on settler colonialization, land and Native Americans, and social justice. She will address this literary form, journaling and the collage-type structure of Summer on the Lakes in 1843. The talk will be followed by a Q&A. Register to attend the Keynote Address.

Katie Simon

Katie Simon, Ph.D.

Katie Simon received her Ph.D. in English from U.C. Berkeley. She is an Associate Professor in the English Department at Georgia College, where she is also affiliated with the Program on Women’s and Gender Studies. Her research and teaching interests focus on nineteenth-century American literature, Critical Theory, and Ecocriticism. Her work appears in: ESQ: A Journal of Nineteenth-Century Literature; Eighteenth-Century Fiction; Women’s Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal; and Bad Subjects: Political Action for Everyday Life. She is currently at work on a book on Transcendentalism and Race, which features a chapter on Margaret Fuller, and an edited collection on Southern Ecocriticism. In 2014, she was awarded Georgia College’s Excellence in Teaching Award. 

Master Class for Teachers

27 October, 6:00-7:00pm (Online). This event is open to high school teachers of all subjects. Dr. Simon will share ideas about didactic approaches to teaching this work. The informal workshop setting will allow teachers to ask questions and share their experiences. Register to attend the Master Class

Guest Lectures 

23 November, 6:00-7:30pm, (Online), Indigenous Peoples of Northern America - Then and Now. Professor Andrea Lanzone, Assistant Dean for Student Academic Affairs, John Cabot University.  Register to attend the lecture.

14 December, 6:00-7:30pm, (Online), Cultural Diversity, Ms. Pilar Murguia, Director of Student Services, John Cabot University. Register to attend the lecture.

Interview and Digital Newsletter Project 

Students attend public lectures, interview speakers, and work in teams to create a digital summary of their work. This activity is ongoing from October through February. Teachers interested in enrolling their students in this project should register for the Italy Reads program.

22 February, 3:30-5:00pm, (Online). Students will present their final work. Register to attend the final presentation.

Volunteer Mentors 

October through April: JCU students meet with high school students, in-person or online, to discuss (in English) Margaret Fuller's, Summer on the Lakes in 1843, her life and the social context in which the book was written, and its relevance to today. Topics of discussions include the literary structure of the travel journal, the tension between a just society and America's westward expansion, the history of feminism, women and journalism, etc...

JCU students: Visit the Volunteer for Italy Reads page for more information and scheduled training sessions.

High school teachers: Register to participate in the Italy Reads Program and receive more information using the Italy Reads Teacher Registration Form. Visits to high schools by JCU Italy Reads Volunteer Mentors can be scheduled to take place in-person and/or remotely from October through April. The frequency of these meetings is based on the academic schedules of the JCU students.

Professional Development Course for Teachers

Each year, Italy Reads offers a Professional Development Course for High School Teachers who plan to include the selected work in their academic program. This 30-hour course is delivered online and is free-of-charge. Completion of this course is not required for participation in the program the following academic year, but it is an excellent opportunity for teachers to study the author and the literary work in depth with colleagues and a JCU professor.

The aim of this annual course is to prepare teachers to engage their students in the study of this work from literary and interdisciplinary perspectives. The course introduces background information on the author and the social and literary context in which they wrote. During the course, teachers exchange best practices in teaching and considerations specific to their teaching realities. 

The outcome of this course, which takes place from January through May, is specific Sample Lessons developed by the recipients of this Italy Reads Scholarship for High School Teachers. In addition to the Resources for Teachers gathered by staff at JCU's Frohring Library, these Sample Lessons provide specific didactic approaches proposed by these Italy Reads Scholars. Resources for Teachers are available for use by all Italy Reads participants. 

Italy Reads 2023-2024
The Professional Development Course in preparation for Italy Reads 2023-2024 will be held from January through May 2023. The book selected will be announced by October. Please return to this page for the Call for Applications to receive an Italy Reads Scholarship to attend this online course. The deadline to apply is 9 January 2023.

Student Video Contest

12 December, 8:00pm, Deadline to submit questions for Video Production Workshop. Completion of the online, 4-part tutorial The Essential Guide to Video Production and participation in Italy Reads are prerequisites to attend the Workshop/Q&A Session. Students: contact your teacher to receive the links to the tutorial and submit your questions using this Questions for Workshop Form.

19 December, 4:00-5:30pm (Online), Video Production Workshop for high school students participating in Italy Reads. Video Production Workshop/Q&A Sesson for high school students participating in Italy Reads (online). Students: Contact your teacher to register for this event.

30 January, 11:00pm, Deadline to submit entries. Read about the Student Video Contest and submit your video. The Italy Reads Student Video Contest is the culmination of a months of activities between high schools and JCU's Italy Reads Program centered around the work and life the selected author. Students: submit your entries following the instructions and using the Video Contest Submission Form. N.B.: One submission per video. The Award Ceremony will be held in March.

Italy Reads Theatre 

In collaboration with Gaby Ford and The English Theatre of Rome. Performances (in English) at John Cabot University will be on 19, 20, 25, and 27 November. Please return here for details of times and reservation procedures as they become available.


  • Teacher Training Workshop on Summer on the Lakes in 1843,  26 May, 22 September 2022.
  • Spring 2022 Italy Reads Professional Development Course - Teaching with Margaret Fuller's Summer on the Lakes in 1843 with Professor Jenn Lindsay.