Texas Tech University

Journey Abroad: The Study of Architecture, Design, and City Planning in Italy

Samantha Salazar

September 19, 2023

Interior Study Abroad

Assistant professor, Lori Guerrero, guides interior design students in a study tour through Italian cities.

Traveling internationally while making progress toward graduation requirements is a dream for many students. Lori Guerrero, Ph.D., taught the ID 3325: Study Tour in Interior Design course this summer during an Italy study abroad trip. Guerrero is a board member of the International Interior Design Association (IIDA) West Texas City Center and faculty advisor for the Texas Tech IIDA Campus Center. Her course exposes students to important architecture, interior design, land use, and city planning in Italian cities such as Venice, Florence, San Gimignano, Rome, and Bracciano. Throughout the study tour, students receive cultural exposure, experiential learning, and the opportunity to experiment with hand-drawn and digital sketching and rendering.

"Not only do students build the skills and knowledge necessary for a career in interior design, but they also learn about diversity, culture, and communication styles that will help them work with people of varying backgrounds," said Guerrero. "Studying abroad gives students the unique opportunity to learn first-hand from experts in other countries."

Guerrero enjoys many aspects of this course and study tour, but her favorite is watching students look at a piece of art, furniture, or architecture they learned about in class. She finds that students get excited when making a real-world connection to previously gained knowledge from their classroom experiences. This past summer, Guerrero took students on a tour led by a Venetian architect who gave in-depth insight into the city's historical background. These tours allow students to hear from local professionals who can provide in-depth and thought-provoking insight related to the course. 

While meeting accreditation standards that prepare students for entry-level interior design positions, the Italy Study Tour in Interior Design provides students with a unique cultural experience that broadens their ability to collaborate with diverse colleagues and clients. Guerrero's ID 3325 Study Tour in Interior Design course is a wise choice for students looking to build on their sketching and rendering skills while immersing themselves in a foreign culture and market.