Executive Director Joseph S. Bruno Endowed Chair
I grew up in Knoxville, Tennessee, USA and received a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Tennessee. I later received a Masters Degree in Human Development and Family Studies from Auburn. The emphasis of my graduate studies was on child development and the relationship between children and the built environment. As a licensed architect, I focused my architectural practice on the design and construction of environments for children. Projects have included pediatric facilities, childcare centers, and outdoor play environments.
Upon joining the Auburn University faculty in 2000, my research and teaching interests expanded to include construction history, outreach, service learning, and study abroad programs. I have been involved with seven study abroad programs; once as a student myself, four times as a faculty member, and twice as a parent when each of my two sons studied abroad. I have had the privilege and responsibility of directing and travelling with college-age students to 10 U.S. states and on 20 visits to 12 different countries. My travels have taken me through most of western Europe, and to several cities in China, Australia, and Egypt.
I believe strongly that an international academic experience is a vital element of a 21st century education. It is an honor to represent Auburn University and the College of Human Sciences at Auburn’s only year-round international campus. It is a joy to be able to live in Ariccia and direct the Joseph S. Bruno Auburn Abroad in Italy program while walking in the footsteps of the celebrated Baroque architect, Gian Lorenzo Bernini. I enjoy sharing and experiencing Italy with students and seeing it, as though it was my first time again, through their eyes.
I was born in Rome on December 29th, 1965 and grew up in Ariccia. Italy. I studied at the Scientific Lyceum Vailati in Genzano and then completed my studies in England where I graduated at the London College for Communications in International Business. I then obtained other specific industry diplomas such as the LCCI (London Chamber of Commerce and Industry), the IAA (International Advertising Association), and the CDT diploma (College for the Distributive Trades). I then worked in the communication and advertising industry with the Lowe Group, then in branding with Landor Associates in London, and later with FutureBrand and TrueBrand in New York and San Francisco.
Today, I continue to consult with one of Italy’s leading branding companies, InArea. I have personally led international projects with clients such as South African Airways, Telecom Italia, ENI, FIAT, Credit Suisse and American Express. I live in Rome and am married to Rossella de Venuto with whom I have three children Mario, Bruce, and Vega. I have a passion for sailing and travel, and I love photography and cinema. Since 1995, I have managed Interlinea, a company based in Rome that focuses on the production of cultural events, art-oriented programs, and educational programs, as well as, community and corporate communications. My passion for art and my love for my hometown of Ariccia led me to be an advisor to the Museum of Baroque of the Palazzo Chigi in Ariccia. Through this association, I have served as the Resident Director of the Joseph S. Bruno Auburn Abroad in Italy program since 2002, coordinating the Italian aspects of the Program, as well as lecturing on a variety of topics related to Italy and its culture. I also serve on the Dean's Advisory Board for the College of Human Sciences at Auburn University..
I was born on July 18, 1980. After qualifying as a Programmer in 1999, I spent several months in Galway, Ireland, where I worked and studied to improve my language skills. After this experience, I developed a strong interest in traveling and exploring different cultures and countries. Since 2002, I have been working as a tour leader, leading groups to various destinations both in Italy and around the world for Italian and international companies. I speak fluent English and Spanish and my interests are traveling, music, art, and good food.
In 2008, I began a collaboration with the Joseph S. Bruno Auburn Abroad in Italy program, first as an Assistant and then as the Program Facilitator. In this role, I oversee all of the needs and activities related to the residence and classroom areas in the Chigi Palace and I also accompany the students on field trips. I provide logistical support, practical help, and information to both students and faculty program-related needs while living in Italy.
I was born on November 5, 1977 and raised in Genzano di Roma, Italy. In 2002, I spent a period of research in the United Kingdom at the University of London Senate House Library and at the Tate Gallery, focusing on William Blake’s Art and Poetry. In 2003, I finished my studies and graduated from the Second University of Rome “Tor Vergata” with a University Degree in English Language, Art and Literature. My thesis, “William Blake and the Political Prophecies, The French Revolution, and Europe: a Prophecy”, received a perfect score of 110/110. One of my passions is art and since 1999, I have been a Docent at the Baroque Museum of the Palazzo Chigi, located in Ariccia. As an expert in Baroque Art, I have led tours for visitors from Italy, England, and America.
In 2003, I began working with Interlinea in the role of Program Coordinator for the Joseph S. Bruno Auburn Abroad in Italy Program. My role is that of organizing the delivery of the academic objectives of the Program and providing logistical support for all of the arrangements required for the Program’s numerous field trips. I also provide lectures on the history and significance of the European Grand Tour and assist students with travel advice and bookings for relatives and friends coming to visit them while they are studying in Italy.