Study Abroad

IES Milan: Music Tradition and Innovation

  • Location: Milan, Italy
  • Minimum GPA: 3.0
  • Language of Instruction: English and Italian
  • Class Eligibility: Sophomores, juniors, and seniors


A famous Milanese song says there are many wonderful Italian cities that people love to visit, but only one in which they want to live and work. Milan is world reknowned as the European capital of fashion, design, architecture, publishing, modern art and music.  Once a capital of the Roman Empire today the the city of Milan is Italy’s lively center of business, banking and finance.  In Piazza Duomo, the architecture of past centuries blends with the neon lights of a modern metropolis.  It is the city where Leonardo da Vinci painted his masterpiece The Last Supper and invented is canal system, the city where Verdi and Puccini produced their operas still performed today at La Scala Opera House and the city where the Futurists Movement redefined the traditional concept of art.

The IES Center is located on the Università Cattolica campus, across the street from the historical cloisters of the Medieval Church of St. Ambrose.

  • Visa:

    Required. See NAFSA: Italy VISA FAQs.

    Non-US citizens should consult with IES and Denise Allison, Director of International Student Services, before applying to the program.

  • Fees: Students pay Haverford tuition, room, and partial board to Haverford College. Haverford will then be responsible for submitting tuition payments to the program.

Previous Italian language study is encouraged but not required.  Higher GPA, junior year standing, and/or further applications may be required to enroll in courses at certain partner universities.

Students are required to enroll in an appropriate-level IES Italian language course. Italian Language in Context: Novice Abroad II fulfills Haverford’s language requirement.

Students are also required to enroll in one English-taught music course at the IES Center.

Italian majors and minors are expected to take their major/minor credits in Italian at one of the affiliated IES universities. Italian majors and minors cannot take elective courses in English at the IES Center.

Academic Credit

Students must carry 15-19 credit hours per semester. Students are not permitted to take less than 15 credits unless they have the permission of their dean and advisor in advance. Major, minor, and concentration transfer credit will only be granted for courses in which students received a grade of a C or above.


This program is designed for students with all levels of Italian language skills. Qualified students may enroll in Milanese universities.

Civica Scuola di Musica
Students with no prior Italian may enroll in technique and performance classes (instruments, voice, composition, orchestra, ensembles). Advanced Italian is required for theory courses, although some English-taught theory courses may be arranged as an independent study.

Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi
Individual instruction may be arranged with faculty from the Conservatorio based on skill level. Based on the number of contact hours, students earn 2-3 credits per course for instruction, private lessons, and ensemble work. Either audio or video files/web links are required with the music application.

La Verdi Symphonic Orchestra and Choir
La Verdi provides an opportunity for students to work directly with professional performers and participate in rehearsals and concerts. An audition by either an audio or video file or web link is required, along with the music application. An in-person live audition with the conductor will then be arranged, which will take place when the student arrives in Milan.

Milano Classical Chamber Orchestra: String Orchestra Assistantship (Spring Only)
This assistantship is designed to offer undergraduate string performers the opportunity to enhance their orchestral  practice of both early Baroque and Classical repertoire, including relevant chamber music literature when applicable.

Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
The Cattolica campus is a short 5-minute walk from the IES Abroad Milan Center. There are a few Italian-taught music history courses available to students with the appropriate language background.

Music and Voice majors can design individualized programs. Those who do not want to take their own instruments can rent.

Course Highlights

Art History, Art, Communications, Composition, Cultural Studies, Design, Ensembles and Choirs, Environmental Studies, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Film Studies, Genger Studies, History, International Business, Internship, International Relations, Italian, Literature, Music, Music History, Music Theory and Technology, Photography, Political Science, Private Instrument and Voice Instruction, Psychology, Service Learning, Sociology, Urban Studies, Voice Performance

Note: Changes occur frequently. Students are responsible for finding the classes they need and consulting the official site of the institution.

Review the Full Academic Requirements for Studying Abroad


A three-day orientation is followed by a three-week language intensive orientation.

Number of Students

Approximately 100-150 students attend each semester for all of the IES Milan programs.

Housing/Meal Plans

Haverford requires that students live with families. This is a wonderful opportunity to learn about Italian families firsthand and engage directly with Italian culture. Homestay families will also provide daily breakfast and dinner (14 meals per week). Haverford students may not opt for independent off-campus housing – that is, housing not arranged by the program.

View Scholarship Information

Apply to Study Abroad!

  • PDF
  • Program List


  • Semester
  • Fulfills Language Requirement


  • Semester I: Early September to mid-December (mid to late December students enrolling in partner universities)
  • Semester II: Mid-January to mid-May (mid-May to mid-June for students enrolling in partner universities)

Application Deadlines

  • Semester I: March 1
  • Semester II: September 22

Faculty Contact

Ute Striker