A life-changing experience that will guide my future decisions. May 07, 2018

By (Truman State University) - abroad from 01/08/2018 to 04/20/2018 with

College Consortium for International Studies (CCIS): Florence - Lorenzo de'Medici

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Independence, understanding, and commitment.

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.

The teachers and staff’s undying commitment to the success of their students was evident day in and day out. Any questions about the language, culture, lodging, etc. was always answered immediately, thoroughly, and professionally. My school was a second home for my while I was studying abroad.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My school did a great job on placing me, but the host family wasn’t the greatest. While I struggled with the host family near the end of my stay, the school and its staff were always there for me in more ways than one.

* Food:

While my host mom was not the kindest, she did make the best food!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I ended up realizing that I had an ear infection about a week into the program. I brought it up to the school on a Monday, and they had me an appointment by Monday evening, and I was back to good health by the next week.

* Safety:

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

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 seemed very excessive needing to pay $900 a month to stay with a host family. I can understand the need to pay a host family, but that also might end up placing students into families that are only in it for the money. That is how I felt at some points.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $200

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

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Advanced
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
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? Fully immerse yourself, stay with a host family, read books in the language, and switch the movies you watch to the language.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* 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?
  • Friends
  • Food
  • Language
* What could be improved?
  • Host family pricing
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Don’t overpack.

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.'