By: Giovanna Leopardi, Director of the St Louis Italian Language Program
This year I was honored to assist in the founding a new Italian language program in St Louis with friends and supporters at the Italian Community of St Louis (Comunità degli Italiani - St Louis). It would not have been possible without having met Dr. Antonio DiTucci of Gateway Science Academy, a public charter highschool in St Louis. He was instrumental in obtaining a home for our classes.
As the director of the program, I'm pleased with the response of so many new students and former students who have signed up for the classes. Along with my colleagues, Concetta Lo Iacono Gabriele and Federica Bertolini, I express my gratitude for all who are journeying with us in our new adventure.
This semester, our very first, has begun with over 50 students signed up in three different classes: Beginners Italian, Advanced Italian, and Conversational Italian. Next semester, starting in Spring 2020, we will add more classes as well as additional teachers. Each of our professors come directly from Italy and have advanced degrees in the Italian language. Furthermore, we use the immersion methodology of teaching a secondary language as this has been shown to be the most efficient and effective way of learning a foreign language.
In addition to our classes for adults, our Italian classes for children have continued to be a success at St Ambrose parish center. Our theme, Imparare L'italiano Giocando, which translates as "learning Italian while playing" has been effective in engaging children of all ages to interact with each other in the Italian language. The number of children and parents participating has grown especially this semester.
I am excited for the possibilities that we have yet to encounter along the way. For the moment, I am thankful for what we have accomplished as an Italian community and especially thankful for being able to provide Italian classes for my students with the resources, classroom setting, and environment that they deserve to learn Italian in the most effective way. I invite you all to invite your friends and family members to attend our Italian classes and I look forward to meeting many of you in person.
The World Trade Center of St Louis hosted its annual convention Growing Global on Wednesday, September 25 at the Ritz Carlton in Clayton, Missouri. The conference brings thousands of individuals and businesses together from around the world in what is St Louis' largest and most high profiled international event. Representing Italian interests in St Louis was Michael Cross, founder of the Italian Community of St Louis and director of the St Louis - Bologna Sister Cities Organization. Cross met with Former Mayor Francis Slay and County Executive Sam Page, both of whom expressed their interest in St Louis' growing Italian population. The purpose of the St Louis - Bologna Sister Cities organization is not only cultural but also economic. Bologna is the capital of Emilia-Romagna, known as the breadbasket of Italy. Agriculture thrives in this rich area and consequently, Emilia Romagna is known as a great gastronomic center of Europe. St Louis, with major agricultural companies and institutions such as Bunge, Italgrani USA, Bayer/Monsanto, and the Danforth Plant Science Center, is at the center of America's agricultural sector.
It seems as if a relation between these two cities was always meant to be. Seeing that the highest levels of local government approve and encourage the growth of the Italian expat community, it is looking as if the cervelli in fuga phenomenon will continue the brain drain that Italy has been experiencing for the last decades. Will there be more Italian based ag sector businesses moving to St Louis in the next few years? That remains to be seen.
By: Camillo Pio di Savoia
The Italian Community of St Louis has been growing at a rapid pace in the past three years due to strong leadership and a growing economy. In the past decade alone several hundred Italian nationals have relocated to the St Louis area according to reports from the Italian Consulate of Chicago.
On Saturday, August 17, the community along with the St Louis - Bologna Sister Cities and the club Italiano Per Piacere, hosted a celebration of Ferragosto at Shaw Park in the St Louis suburb of Clayton. Over 200 people attended, many of them Italian exchange students and post-docs from local universities such as Washington University and Saint Louis University. Much fun was had by all.
Many of the participants this year were newcomers to St Louis, a city located in the center of the United States and a hub for the agricultural technology sector. Several young Italian professionals stated that they worked for the Danforth Plant Science Center and Bayer which has just bought out Monsanto. Others came to St Louis as entrepreneurs and have begun their own private businesses such as Giorgio Bucci who is CEO of Arteco Global, an IT company which sells video surveillance software.
Representatives of two local media outlets, FOX2 News and a local Italian-American newspaper Il Pensiero, were present interviewing members of the Italian community. PURUS VODKA, a sponsor of the event was also present providing Italian inspired cocktails. The company has its headquarters in St Louis while its production remains in the northwest province of Piemonte using water from the Alps to produce a distinguished vodka.
Italian karaoke was most likely the most memorable highlight of the evening for guests of all ages. Nothing was formal about the event as is the case with any ferragosto party. Coming down from Chicago to St Louis, I was slightly skeptical about how large of an Italian community St Louis could have. Now I'm thinking about moving to the Gateway City.
Una nuova avventura insieme alla Maryville University qui a St. Louis. Vittorio Sasso, Massimiliano Simonazzi, ed Emil Antonacci sono pronti per affrontare un nuovo anno accademico e sportivo negli USA!
Vittorio Sasso, Massimiliano Simonazzi, and Emil Antonacci have just arrived from Italy this month and are eager to begin their new adventure on Maryville University's soccer team. The three received soccer scholarships from the university. The Italian Community of St Louis will be present at the team's home game vs Christian Brothers University on Sunday, September 8th. Kickoff is at 11am at Maryville University's new stadium in Chesterfield.
The first batch of Italian exchange students arrived on Friday, August 1st at St Louis Lambert International Airport. Bianca, Chiara, Samantha, and Luna were all smiles as they met their host families for the very first time. CIEE International has partnered with the Italian Community of St Louis (Comunitá degli Italiani - St Louis) and the St Louis-Bologna Sister Cities Organization, to operate an Italian exchange student program under the direction of Celia Mullikin.
For the very first time, the Ambassador of the European Union to the United States, Honorable Caroline Vicini made a visit to St Louis for the region's largest annual international conference held at the Ritz-Carlton in Clayton. This year's theme was Growing Global - The Political Economy of Trade. Over 750 people were in attendance including the leading Italian businesses in St Louis and many dignitaries from across the world
The St Louis - Bologna Sister Cities Organization invites you to its very first CHRISTMAS CONCERT (Concerto di Natale) on Saturday, 01 December 2018 at 7PM starring Benedetta Orsi, a native of Bologna, and many more famed international musicians.