Eye-Opening Last Semester Abroad July 19, 2017

By (Pre Med, Trinity University) - abroad from 03/06/2017 to 05/26/2017 with

CIEE: Taipei - Intensive Chinese Language and Culture

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was definitely a good decision to go out every weekend. Many students went out Thursday-Saturday nights and rested Sunday. It was a great way to fully experience Taiwan but still get enough rest for the week ahead.

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.

The language course was intensive of course, with quizzes once to twice a week and exams almost once a week. However, because many students skipped class, the teacher had trouble running class because it's mainly interactive. With not enough students, the teacher could not do all the activities she had planned for class. The teacher was very great though.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

NCCU is considered a food desert, because there are very few restaurant options around campus.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Take advantage of the cultural ambassadors! They are great resources to study Chinese and also know where the best restaurants and hang-out locations are!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

The program director's assistant April was the best with this. One weekend night, my friend dislocated his arm, and she came directly to the hospital to help. I know she's helped with other students' health issues as well.

* Safety:

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

I made amazing friends with both local and American students, traveled all around Taiwan, tried all the foods I wanted, and fully experienced the culture here. Oh, and of course became so much more fluent in Chinese.

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's very doable to live on $70 a week, but you should go out at least once a week or travel, which requires spending money most of the time.

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

Class only used Chinese, but if you hung out with a lot of the American students, you would use English a lot. If you hang out with the cultural ambassadors more, then you'll get to use a lot of Chinese.

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? Make friends with the cultural ambassadors and intentionally practice Chinese!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • people
  • food
  • culture
* What could be improved?
  • location is a bit far away from everything
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? bring better walking shoes, but of course you could buy them in Taiwan, too

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.