Summer Plans Series: When in Rome, Help the Homeless

By Cody McConnell ‘14
University Communications

Sometimes, you need to do what you want to do in life, according to Wallis Nash ’15, an international relations and anthropology dual major and French minor, who did an internship this summer in Rome, Italy.

“I decided I’m too young to do what’s practical over what I want to do,” said Nash. “I also really wanted to do an internship so I could get international work experience.”

Earlier this summer, Nash learned basic Italian and participated in IES Abroad, where she interned at Europe Consulting. The social cooperative helps to reintegrate homeless individuals into society by rebuilding their self esteem through a variety of programs. One of the programs, called Bike 95, requires homeless individuals to maintain and rent bicycles to people.

IMG_2969“I translated the Bike 95 website from Italian into English, French, and Spanish,” stated Nash.  Along with other interns, Nash produced a promotional video for Bike 95 using stop motion, an animation technique.  Nash also took pictures for another stop motion for a different project called Gare Solidaire, a collaboration among 12 train stations across Europe working to decrease homelessness.

“I was able to help the homeless people in Rome, and the promotional videos I made will continue to help them,” said Nash. She also admitted that she learned a lot about herself and grew from the experience. “I learned a lot about cooking for myself and not relying on all of my needs being in, or around, my dorm building,” said Nash. She also learned about the differences between United States and Italian culture.

This story is part of the Summer Plans Series, a collection of stories about how undergrads at the University of Rochester are spending their summer. Know of someone doing something cool over break? Email The Buzz ( and tell us all about it!