In order to find yourself, you must lose yourself Past Review

By (University of Arizona) - abroad from 06/26/2014 to 07/26/2014 with

CEA: Barcelona, Spain

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
In one month abroad, I learned more about myself than in the last two years of my life. There is no other experience that lets you leave every disposition that you have ever associated and labeled yourself with than studying abroad and reintroducing yourself with strangers that have no sort of preconceived notion of you. From there, you can really learn about who you truly are and the abilities that you possess that make you an individual and to survive on your own. I learned through my experience that I am way more savvy, intelligent and resourceful than I could have ever known, by being so far away from home as I was. I was hoping to have a memorable experience but came back with a life changing attitude and perspective that carries with me to this day. I have become more of a complete person through studying abroad.

Review Photos

CEA Global Education: Barcelona, Spain Photo CEA Global Education: Barcelona, Spain Photo CEA Global Education: Barcelona, Spain Photo CEA Global Education: Barcelona, Spain Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Informative insight on international companies through case studies and class presentations made classes very interactive. Teachers provided modern case studies that were relative to the world's current globalized marketplace.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

All the on-site faculty members went above and beyond to make my experience comfortable, exciting and versatile. They provided much tips and advice from places of interest to cafes to eat at. The faculty was very much a factor for the wonderful time I had abroad.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The apartment that I had was spacious and had all the necessities that we needed. The location was close to the metro, so getting to classes and around the city was no more than a 5-minute walk away. We had a large living area and a balcony looking over the street.

* Food:

Spanish ate blander than I thought but one of the most traditional and common meals that came across was tapas. Tapas are small appetizers essentially, but vary in contents and taste from restaurant to restaurant. Tapas are super convenient due to that they are small and are easily to grab on the go as you explore the city.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

After two weeks, I started my day by going to a local coffee shop where I would eat a ham sandwich (delicacy in Spain) with my espresso while reading the Barcelona paper outside with other local Catalonians. I noticed and attempted to pick up on some of the social norms I would see from other Catalonians nearby on a daily basis. I acclimated and acted less like an American the longer I was there.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

There were no necessary vaccines that I needed before I went abroad. CEA made it very clear of the procedures and immediate care that they would provide at any given moment while I was abroad. We were all given emergency contact information and locations of nearby hospitals in case of emergency. The staff on site would accommodate any student who was experiencing any symptoms or concerns either at the learning center or in your apartment. I never got sick once and I did not feel in anyway worried about my health while studying abroad in Barcelona.

* Safety:

Barcelona was probably the safest city I have ever visited to date. If you needed to get groceries late at night or wanted to take a jog you could do so without worry. The streets were all very lit and police patrolled frequently. The only safety advice that I would give would be to hold onto your items, (cell phone, keys, wallet, etc) while taking the subway/metro. The metro advertises greatly to be aware of pickpockets while riding. I had worn shorts with concealable pockets where I never encountered any pickpockets myself with the precautions I took.

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

Finances

* 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)

It was very possible to live on a student budget and to spend under $100 a week on food in Barcelona due to the close proximity that my apartment was from the supermarket. I went out to eat at local restaurants for dinner twice a week so for me personally it was over $100 a week. It all depends on the person, it was by no means difficult to eat well below $100 a week.

Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? You can eat at a local shop 5 days a week three meals a day and only spend $50 at the most.

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

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
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Meeting strangers that have become some of my best friends.
  • Having no constraints but only freedom to explore the city in which ever way I wanted to.
  • Getting lost in a foreign land that I have never visited before.
* What could be improved?
  • More activities with all the students in the program present.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I researched Barcelona's attractions more than I did, I feel like there was so much more the city had to offer.