The best experience of my life February 06, 2017

By (Trinity University) - abroad from 08/24/2016 to 12/17/2017 with

CIEE: Madrid - Liberal Arts

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about how I like to live. Also, the type of city in which I want to work and start my life in. It was extremely worthwhile.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

It was a good combination of academic challenge and enough time for us to enjoy our study abroad semester.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

They were always willing to help us and trying to get in contact with us if we were comfortable with everything.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I hated my roommates, we were not compatible at all and I did not like going to my apartment, even though the physical structure was newly renovated and comfortable.

* Food:

I wasn't provided food by the program but Madrid's food was incredible.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The program was always telling us about activities and events where we could meet new people that were enjoyable as well.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I wasn't sick during my semester but I did see how the program helped others with detailed instructions of what to do and how to proceed when they were sick.

* Safety:

I never felt some sort of danger during my entire semester.

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

I didn't know how helpful a program can be. Plus, comparing it to the experiences other students had, our program was definitely the best one in the city.

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 kind of hard since food wasn't provided to us, which was the most expensive thing.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Around 100-150.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Go to home-stays and not apartments, the cost is the same but the food is really expensive.

Language

* 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

I am a spanish speaker but it did encourage people to learn the language.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Fluent
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Spanish is my first language.
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Try to have more than basic knowledge prior to the semester, it will make your stay much more enjoyable.

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

  • Local Students
  • 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?
  • City
  • People
  • Classes
* What could be improved?
  • Housing
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? The living habits of my roommates.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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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.