Great experience- Wish I had stayed longer! Past Review

By (Kinesiology and Exercise Science., University of Wisconsin - LaCrosse) - abroad from 02/06/2012 to 05/12/2012 with

API (Academic Programs International): Seville - Universidad de Sevilla

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was definitely a worthwhile experience. I learned how to be a better listener, always keep an open mind, and how to have fun no matter what I was doing.

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.

Classes were not as rigorous as in the US and I felt like some of my teachers weren't that dedicated to teaching us.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The API staff was always very helpful for whatever I needed and their offices were open pretty much every day. There were many opportunities for volunteering, excursions, etc.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I was pretty satisfied with my housing experience. I was about a 15 min walk from the school and in a nice neighborhood - I felt safe running by myself at all times of the day.

* Food:

My host mom was a very good cook but EVERYTHING in Spain is fried so that was hard to get used to. She was very good about asking us what we liked and didn't like so that was nice.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I was very lucky and got a great intercambio from API so that was how I met most of my Spanish friends. However, I was one of very few people who got an intercambio through API and many people were disappointed with that.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I just went to the pharmacy if I was sick and they were very helpful there. I never had any problems with health issues in Seville (such was bad water, pollution, etc) and I didn't need any special vaccines.

* Safety:

Seville is an amazing city and there is always activity going on in it at all hours of the night. I felt very safe because there were always people out and about. I bought pepper spray before I left but never felt the need to bring it out when I was in Seville. The men are pretty forward in the city so it's easy to feel grossed out by their comments but I never felt my safety was in danger.

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


* 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)

Seville can be as expensive as you make it, but in my experience I found it was worth it for me to spend more money by going out to eat and going out at night because that's how I met the most people and got together with friends. And of course you want to travel a lot so that can get expensive too.

* Was housing included in your program cost? Yes
* Was food included in your program cost? Yes
Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $75
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Eat at home as much as you can! Your host mom is making you great, traditional food so take advantage of it. That way if you do go out with friends you can just get tapas which are very cheap.


* 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

It was kind of up to us how much we wanted to use our Spanish when speaking with program staff but on our excursions the tours were typically in Spanish.

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? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? SPA 304
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? Spend as much time as you can with your Spanish friends! It's easy to spend most of your time hanging out with other study abroad students (which is completely fine-I made a lot of great friends that way) but if you can try to get your Spanish and American friends together so everyone can practice.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
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?
  • Travel excursions
  • Local events
  • Staff
* What could be improved?
  • Classes at University
  • Smaller traveling group sizes
  • More detailed survey to pair with host family
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Take as much Spanish before you leave as possible!! It's so much easier to meet people when you're more proficient at the language.