Pragueblogging Past Review

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 01/29/2016 to 05/13/2016 with

CET Film Production at FAMU

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained filmmaking/production experience which was important to my hopeful future career. I also developed a passion for cooking while fending for myself abroad, and got to see cities that I had only read about or seen in films. A lot of what I gained from this experience abroad was not directly connected with the programme, and it was worthwhile.

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.

Rigorous in terms of production but less so for many other courses. No syllabi for courses.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Terribly disorganised, very little support

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Close to public transit but not super central

* Food:

We had to fend for ourselves but generally affordable

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt welcomed and really enjoyed my time experiencing Czech culture

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

No real comment as I didn't have an experience, but socialised medicine for the win

* Safety:

Very safe! Felt comfortable walking home in the dark. Gun control for the win.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? No

I am actually more of a "maybe" for this. I'd probably look more into the other programmes that also studied at FAMU, just to see if there had been a better-rated one. Also within the culture of the programme this semester I didn't feel like I fit in with the Americans, so I'm not sure if I was just unlucky in that aspect.


* 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)

I spent about $1000 a month but that might be because of travel. I travelled a lot while abroad, and while CR was affordable because of the CZK to USD exchange rate is pretty good, travelling in the UK and the Eurozone was more complicated.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? ~$200
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Ask your host or cultural buddies about money saving tips; travelling got a lot cheaper when I found out about the Student Agency travel company. Also use hostels! They can be very cheap in many cities.


* 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

Czech classes did occur, and we had Czech buddies as flatmates, but we weren't forcibly immersed.

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? None for the target language
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? Read stuff in Czech, ask your buddies for help, expand your lexicon.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • 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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Food
  • Learning about culture
  • Film experience
* What could be improved?
  • Organisation
  • Communication/Transparency
  • Emotional support
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Some people are going to be very stuck up about your inexperience, so stick to your guns. Don't presume too much about other people's friendships. They can be as easily broken as they are made.

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 Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'