January Abroad in Sorrento January 26, 2023

By (Biomedical Engineering, University of Massachusetts Amherst / UMass) - abroad from 01/02/2023 to 01/21/2023 with

CISabroad (Center for International Studies): Sorrento - Semester on the Italian Coast

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Yes it was worthwhile. I gained a new sense of independence and appreciation for different cultures.

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.

It was a great amount of work for the length of the program, I took Marine Biology, however there was definitely a lot of content crammed in since we only had 2 weeks of class.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Very attentive and responded to emails quickly about classes.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The apartment location was great, right in the center of town. However, there were a lot of issues with its functionality; shower flooded, sink leaked, wifi didn't work, dishwasher didn't work, there was no hot water, and our stove top had to be replaced. The landlord was nice however not super great about helping us to solve the problems.

* Food:

The food was so amazing, just wish I was aware most restaurants would close down after the Christmas season.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Wish I could've spent more time with locals, but all the shop owners in town were super fun and nice to us.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Emergency numbers at Sant'anna seemed out of service, but otherwise Sorrento felt very safe.

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

I would definitely go back to Sorrento in a warmer time of the year, a lot was closed down so there wasn't much to do in town, but I still had a lot of fun traveling. A bigger city would've been more ideal for traveling to other places but it still worked out. If I were to go back for a full semester I definitely would go to an university that had local students attended as well, not just study abroad students so that I could become more integrated with the language and cultures and make friends from a new country.


* 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)

Definitely ended up spending way more than I planned, but since it was a short time period we prioritized eating good meals so went out to eat more than I would've if there for a full semester.

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? Buy groceries and plan to go out to eat on weekends or only about 2-3 times a week, and cook your own breakfast and lunch. Generally try and not spend much during the week so that you can splurge and pay for fun experiences or souvenirs when traveling to new places on weekends.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

Mostly everyone I encountered also spoke English so it was very easy to get by.

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? None

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
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • meeting new friends
  • traveling to new places
  • food
* What could be improved?
  • more classes offered
  • more CIS/school group activities
  • extend program by 2/3 days so we have a final weekend in Italy
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Wish I knew about the weather, and how much the small coastal towns shut down during the winter. I also wish I was more aware that the school only offered 4 classes and how none of the credits would be able to be transferred.

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.