Madrid Internship Program: A Cultural Experience Past Review

By (Neurobiology and Neurosciences., Brandeis University) for

Boston University: Madrid - Internship Program, Summer

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
My experiences in Spain made me much more appreciative of cultural differences. The emphasis on time with family and friends in the Spanish culture made me rethink time I spent away from work and school. People in Spain take much more advantage of free time. With regards to future plans, my study abroad experience reaffirmed my desire to pursue medical school.

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.

The workload was heavier than I expected during the middle and end of the course. The course I took had a written, presentation, and exam part to the midterm and final.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The program administration was very accessible and gave good advice on cultural activities to do within Madrid. The guided tours were very informative when we took group trips to another city in Spain.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My neighborhood was very safe and was located about thirty minutes from both my work and internship. I didn't need to buy any items to settle-in and was provided everything I needed by my host. I was treated as a guest.

* Food:

My host's cooking was very delicious!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The program trips to Sevilla, Toledo, and Segovia were all very interesting and informative. On each trip we had a guided tour of the city's cathedrals, museums and other cultural atrractions. I also took trips on my own to Lisbon and Barcelona where I got to learn a lot about the culture of the respective areas. In Madrid I attended a bullfight and went to museums like the Prado.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I felt very safe in Madrid, even at night. Near the areas that attract the most tourists there is a significant amount of pick-pocketing so it is best to keep your money and ID somewhere close to your body. When going out into the city take only what you will need. I was never pick-pocketed, but I did have friends in the program that had things stolen.

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)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
Language acquisition improvement?

I practiced the language both in class and with my host. I needed to use the langugage in everyday interactions in Spain. Some people spoke a little English but I used spanish in the majority of my interactions.

If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

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

Select all that apply

  • Host Family

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Any student who wants to get work experience abroad would benefit from this progam. I felt that I was fully integrated into the Spanish culture due to my experience at my internship.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Espanol con Fines Profesionales

Course Department: LS305
Instructor: Mar Campelo Moreno
Instruction Language: Spanish
Comments: The course was challenging and I learned a lot about the idioms and grammer of the Spanish language. The teacher was knowledgeable but did not always explain concepts relating to grammer in enought depth. I participated in class more than I would at my home institution since the class was structured around answering workbook questions.
Credit Transfer Issues: