Studying at a Nexus of Time September 30, 2022

By (Archaeology, University of Southern California) - abroad from 09/01/2021 to 05/15/2022 with

CYA (College Year in Athens) - Semester/Academic Year Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained valuable career experience, meaningful relationships, and a new outlook on life. It was worthwhile.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

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

I first arrived to Athens with the intention of getting to know all of its ancient monuments. For students of history, classics, and archaeology, I think this is the primary aspect that makes CYA attractive. For sure, the ancient monuments and ruins that dot much of Athens makes for a picturesque and out-of-body experience. However, Athens much more than its ruins, its a city that is teeming with energy at all hours of the days, from museum events, rebetiko music in tavernas, and general nightlife, there is something for everyone at any time. Greeks also tend to be very welcoming of foreign students, people of all backgrounds who come to really immerse themselves this unique culture will be welcomed with an incredible hospitality. CYA is very cognizant of this, and they've prepared a study abroad experience that encourages this kind of exploration; anthropology courses which empowers their students to inquire into the city's vibrant culture, and archaeology courses which take place at the sites they explore. This is conducive for a kind of experiential learning that is unmatched by traditional forms of teaching. The lecturers at CYA are respective experts in their field, which makes classroom discussions in these experiential settings often feel like you're being taken on a tour of the city through time, rather than a static lecture. Beyond Athens, CYA incorporates field study in other parts of Greece, which allowed me to really grasp the cultural and geographic diversity that makes Greece the most beautiful country I've ever seen. tl;dr although the academic component was amazing, and at the heart of the study abroad experience, I feel like I learned more about life in my time here than I could have at a traditional institution.


* 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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 45


* 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? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
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? Engage with locals

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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The setting
  • The instructors
  • The courses
* What could be improved?
  • Language courses
  • Engagement with local community
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That I would fall in love with living there

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 Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!