Art historian and paintings conservator by training, but explorer of Sicily by vocation, Susi has been involved in the many facets of study-abroad programs since 2002, from teaching in the classroom and on sites around the island, to all aspects of student life, from emergency response to theatrical events!
After graduating in History of Art and Italian, and completing a post-graduate course in Painting Conservation in the UK, Susi moved to Sicily in 1991. In 2002, she began work as a lecturer at the Mediterranean Center for Arts and Sciences, which then became the Arcadia University Center in Sicily. Alongside her activity as a lecturer in art history and Sicilian culture, Susi began to deal with other aspects of student life, from extra-curricular activities, volunteer work, intercultural dialogue to health and housing. In 2015, when the Arcadia University center closed, she with some former colleagues created the Sicily Center for International Education, promoted by EXEDRA Associazione Culturale, a long-standing organiser of cultural activity. This center for study-abroad programs has recently been renamed the EXEDRA Mediterranean Center, and Susi is now the resident director. She continues to learn about study-abroad from the students who come to Siracusa every year and through professional development courses which she attends regularly.
Susi has always had an interest in education and has taught English in Sicily since 1991, both privately and in various public and private schools. She is currently adjunct professor of English at the ITS Fondazione Archimede in Siracusa, working to improve the language skills of young people about to go into the tourist trade. She enjoys the challenge of translation, especially texts concerning art, history, archaeology and Sicily in general, and her interest in cultural heritage sees her helping as a volunteer for the FAI, Fondo Ambiente Italiano, guiding and promoting unfamiliar corners of Siracusa and the province. Her ‘therapy’ is music and she plays cello regularly in local groups – but equally therapeutic is a night of Scottish ceilidh dancing, often organised for local festivities to celebrate intercultural exchange.