Morocco: My New Second Home Past Review

By (Anthropology and Religious Studies, University of Massachusetts - Dartmouth) for

CIEE: Rabat - Language and Culture

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
This program made coming back to America harder than I ever thought it would. It's not if I do or don't regret going, it's if I do or don't regret coming back! I loved my time in Morocco, and it has helped me feel more comfortable with the fact that I don't have the rest of my life planned out to the day.

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: University of Muhammed 5, Qalam Aw Lawh
How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The Arabic classes at Qalam Aw Lawh were amazing! My teacher, Hassan, was great. The workload really wasn't bad either, considering it was such a short time frame. The cultural component had a heavier work load, but had much less classroom hours.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

My Resident Director, Madiha, was the best! I She was very available, and always helpful. She went above and beyond.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I will always consider my host family my family. I miss them tons and hope to see them again. They were wonderful people and took great care of me when I was sick, and even when I wasn't. I cried for about 2 hours straight when I had to leave them!

* Food:

I was scared of the food, but it was good! I've never eaten better in my life! My host family made the best food!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

We went on several trips and they were all great! Chefchaouen, Essouaria, the Atlas and tons of stuff in the Rabat area. If you're feeling home sick the Upstairs on Mishliffin Ave. (near Driss and Iza's house- you'll know it well if you go) is a great spot.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I felt safe there, just stay aware like you would in a crowded street on New York City. I got sick while I was there, and the pharmacies and doctors were great and very knowledge-able. I didn't need many vaccinations, I only got a Hep B shot.

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

Language acquisition improvement?

My host family only spoke Moroccan Arabic so I learned a lot from interacting with them. I need to use arabic daily, and sometimes was able to get by with my limited french. Many people speak english, but you definitely can not rely on that! If you're looking for immersion you will get it in this program!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • My Family!!!
  • The amount of independence
  • The Language Experience
* What could be improved?
  • Prof. Zaki
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? If you want to commit to learning a language, and having great interactions with the Islamic world, this is a great place to start.