Get excited- your world is about to change! Past Review

By (Dietetics, Clinical Nutrition, University of Maine - Orono) - abroad from 01/19/2015 to 05/23/2015 with

API (Academic Programs International): Seville - Universidad Pablo de Olavide

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
This was one of the best experiences of my life. I miss it every single day- especially the incredible people I met. Four months was just not enough time, I was not ready to leave. I think everyone should go abroad and experience something like this because it truly will change their life. I have a new-found sense of adventure and I am so much more confident in my problem-solving, people-skills and adaptability after an experience like this. It is so worthwhile.

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 on-site administration was awesome. They were enthusiastic and fun in the beginning when we were all nervous and shy, and they were problem-solvers when we depended on them in a foreign country 5,000 miles away from home. My experience abroad would not have been half as successful as it was without the API directors.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I loved my host mom. We had an awesome relationship, and I truly felt like she cared about me as a person and the development of our relationship. I did experience some difficulties with the language barrier, but overall the experience was incredible and I wouldn't change a thing.

* Food:

Lunch was amazing. I loved the vegetables and fruit for dessert and my favorite foods quickly became lentil soup and gazpacho. I miss them already! Dinner, however, was not my favorite. We typically were served frozen pizza or frozen/ fried foods for dinner and I did not like that. It wasn't all the time, but lunches were definitely the best.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt very integrated. Sevilla is a very authentic spanish city, and I felt like I got a ton of cultural exposure during my four month abroad. I looked forward to intercambio events weekly, and making friends with the spanish students. I also experienced holy week and feria de Abril, two very unique spanish traditions, while I was abroad.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Sevilla is a very safe city. I did not have any problem, and I had a forty minute walk home every night!

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)

Money did not hinder my experience whatsoever, but it is a huge part of life while abroad. I was able to survive weekly on 10-20 euros but once the weekends came, I spent a crazy amount of money on my traveling. But that was my choice. I did not need to travel as much as I did, and I think if a person spends most of their time in their host city, they wont have a problem with money. Spain is very cheap, and our meals were provided. It is also very easy to get a teaching job on the side to make some money.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 100 euros a week when I traveled.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? When traveling, cook meals in the hostel or air bnb you stay at... grocery stores are much cheaper in Europe and it is a lot of fun to cook with the traveling group as well.


* 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

There were a lot of intercambio events with spanish/english students and a lot of encouragement to c=practice 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? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? I took Spanish 6 in high school.
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? Talk with your host family a lot at meals, that is the best time to practice.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* 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?
  • The friends I met
  • Freedom to travel
  • Security, all of my questions were answered
* What could be improved?
  • Nothing, I enjoyed it all.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I didn't bring a jacket to Spain and that was a big mistake- I was freezing my first week there!

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.