An Incredible Introspection into French Culture and Lifestyle May 23, 2022

By (politics, Brandeis University) - abroad from 08/25/2021 to 05/08/2022 with

Academic Programs Abroad (APA): Paris Gap Year

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Besides gaining a much greater grasp on French which I hope to use both professionally and in my personal life, the intrinsic journey one takes in moving to a new country and learning a whole new way of life is incredibly conducive to personal growth.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

I enjoyed the academic freedom we had with APA as well as the countless cultural excursions that were available to us on a nearly weekly basis.


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 50-100 euros
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? The best money-saving tip would be to save as much money as possible the summer before your year or semester abroad in which you could live comfortably off of during your time.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Advanced French
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Practicing with students/peers/people your age is the best way to feel more comfortable with the language you already know and get a better grasp on language you have not learned.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • cultural immersion
  • academic freedom
  • access to travel
* What could be improved?
  • housing options
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Knowing what restaurants/nightlife options are the most appropriate for my budget

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.