Students of the Warwick in Venice study abroad programme held in the Palazzo affected by extreme weather as the country faces its worst flood in ten years.
Strong winds and heavy rain has led to nine deaths so far. The Civil Protection Agency has issued multiple weather warnings, while authorities warn against tourists entering the country.
At least 77% of the city was under water, as high tides on Monday from northern Italy brought strong winds which pushed water into Venice.
The floods are expected to inundate at least 12% of the city. The extreme weather has been attributed to climate change, which is forecasted to bring even worse conditions.
In Italy, Rome has also been sieged with water, and parks and tourists sites such as the Roman Forum, the city of Pompeii, and the Colosseum have been closed.
History students that choose to follow the “Renaissance and Modern History” pathway are guaranteed to spend the autumn term of their final year in Venice.
They board in a fifteenth-century palazzo near the Grand Canal, known as Palazzo Pesaro-Papafava, which houses teaching rooms and a library.
Learning about the social, political, cultural and economic history of Venice and Florence during the Renaissance, they are taught by staff from the University’s History Department.
Guided tours of the major monuments of the city are a key part of the module. At half-term, students are sent off to spend ten days in Florence.
Commenting on the flood, Pat Yeates, a third year History student who is currently on the term abroad in Venice, said: “It was quite shocking to see how high the water was.”
“In some places, it was up to people’s waists. It really makes you realise how vulnerable Venice actually is,” he added.