Marco Biava is one of the many foreign students attending CEU this year. He is from Bergamo, Italy, which is about 20 miles from Milan. Biava is completing his general classes after studying electronics the past four years. He has been here since the summer of 2002 where he has made Aaron Jones his home.
Marco just returned from New York, where on spring break he went to visit some of the universities he applied to. He has been accepted by Manhattan College and Fordham University for Business Management. They are both located in the middle of New York City.
"I'll probably choose Fordham since it better fits my needs. It's a big university, has very high reputation for its Business Management program, and it's in a Roman Catholic environment. It's located in the center of today's financial and economical world and life style is much closer to the one in my hometown Bergamo."
"My goal is a Master's Degree in Business Management ... and after I'll be done with school I [hope to] have [a business]. My father is proud to have a son in the U.S. who already knows what he wants to do in his future," Biava stated.
He is the youngest of three children and has two older brothers. "I look up to them because they are wise and they know the way that I should act. They are like fathers in a way, and they have so much scholastic preparation that they make me want to study even more. My brother Enrico, 41, is just about to graduate with a doctorate in philosophy. He wants to become a university professor here in the U.S. My other brother Giuseppe, 38, is an electronic engineer and is the production manager and director of the engineering department of my dad's company,"Biava explained.
One of the things Biava misses about Italy is the way people dress. "When you are in Italy, whether you are at work or you go to buy milk at the store you are always in best dress, and looking very nice. In the Italian culture, we like to wear the beautiful dress shirt and shiny shoes.
Biava points out some of the differences between Italy and the US: "Here you can buy dress shirts for less money than you could in Italy, however, it won't be "Made in Italy." If you didn't dress this way, you didn't have much chance in getting into any dance type places. Here in Utah the dress is more casual, jeans and tee shirt, you can feel more free. Also the girls here get married at a very young age. In Italy the average age to get married is from 28 to 35," he said.
He explained how the people in Italy would rather get together and talk rather than go to a movie. "Here, I see people eat very quickly. In Italy we would sit and talk at dinner for about two hours. I miss the talks I had with my family and friends."
"In America, people are very friendly and open. It was very easy to make friends here. They all keep me very happy and comfortable, and I can trust many of them," he said when discussing his experiences in the U.S.
He explained how the atmosphere is also different. "In Italy I live in one of the most industrialized cities of Europe with a 5 million people metropolitan area and a density of almost 5,000 people per square mile. There isn't much nature like there is here. I liked being here because we are close to the mountains and desert, but often I miss the crowd. In Italy, even if we have the beautiful Alps, we would have to drive outside the city but not many people could do this because they are too busy working.
The size of Italy is about the same as Utah. In Utah there are around 2.5 million people when compared to Italy's 60 million.
"I like the music here. In Italy, however, we mostly listen to house and techno. I still listen to Italian music a lot but it's nice to change it up."
Marco would like to thank each of his friends here for making him feel welcome and including him in school activities. "I will miss CEU a lot when I leave, especially all the friends that I made here for being so cool with me, but I'm excited for the next big step," Biava said.
Update: In 2012, Marco Biava contacted The Eagle regarding this article. In addition to clarifying some factual errors, Biava recanted some of his statements. This article has been updated to reflect those changes.