Amazing Experience with a few bumps Past Review

By (Communication Disorders, Communication Sciences, University of Maine - Orono) - abroad from 09/01/2015 to 12/22/2015 with

American University in Bulgaria: Blagoevgrad - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I loved traveling abroad and I loved all the people that I met and it was completely worthwhile and a life changing experience and I am so glad that I am lucky enough to have to experience this and I just feel great about it, but also there were a few bumps that were overwhelming with no help.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The Administration at AUBG was a joke and very disorganized and no help at all with any of their students needs let alone there study abroad students.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Living arrangements were okay.

* Food:

The food was awful

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt very integrated by everyone and I loved my experience despite the other defaults of the program

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I ended up in the hospital during my stay and the healthcare industry is not up to date as it is in AMerica but it is not a horrible alternative at all. Again I told my school (UMaine) that I was in the hospital and got no reply from them. However, AUBG was very accomadating at with helping me navigate the hospital until payment came around and offered me no advice or aid and that is when (greatly appreciated) the University of Maine stepped in and gave me some help.

* Safety:

This Host institution focused little on safety of students

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? No


* 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
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Plan Plan Plan. Make a budget its so important


* 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

Bulgarian is a hard language to learn but it was very fulfilling and necessarry to naviagating around town.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Just start learning the Bulgarian cyrillic alphabet during the summer or time before you leave and it will help you majorly.

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International 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?
  • The easy access to Travel
  • Traveling itself
  • The people I met
* What could be improved?
  • Administration
  • Contacting
  • Language
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That I would never really be the same when I got bac because apart of my and my identity is over in Bulgaria

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 Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'