Great math and beautiful city. Disappointing in terms of meeting locals. Past Review

By (Mathematics, Statistics, Wellesley College) - abroad from 09/07/2015 to 12/17/2015 with

BSM: Budapest - Budapest Semesters in Mathematics

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot of math and gained some cultural experience by living in a post-Soviet country.

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.

I worked hard on all of my math classes. They were as difficult or harder than the math classes that I took at my home university.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

I had to take care of food by myself (no dining halls, etc). Luckily, eating is inexpensive. I enjoyed purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables from the markets.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I wish there were more opportunities to meet other Hungarian students or people my age. The program was very insular - I only spent time with other North American students. I feel like I missed out on certain aspects of learning about the local culture and only saw the country through a tourist's lens.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I didn't need to use the healthcare system, though the program provided health insurance for the people in the program.

* Safety:

Budapest is one of the safest places that I've lived.

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $30
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Cook your own food. Stay away from tourist areas. Look for the hole-in-the-wall family-owned Hungarian restaurants.


* 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? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? N/A
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? Take the Babilon Intensive 3 week course before the semester begins.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* 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? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Math
  • Budapest
* What could be improved?
  • Meeting Hungarians
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I need to work harder in terms of meeting locals.