The best time if your Undergrad! May 03, 2023

By (Political Science and Government, Bowdoin College) - abroad from 01/27/2023 to 05/19/2023 with

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

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was incredible- it allows you to learn how people live outside of your bubble. It helps you understand other societies and civilizations and the ways in which other societies function in at times more efficient and more ethical manners than you have observed.

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 classes at CYA have a very different structure and approach than what you experience at a standard American University. Learning along with engaging with the material is valued much more than individual grades unlike what we are used to in the States focused on letter grades. In terms of intensity the classes are not at all close to the same intensity as some of the universities back in the States but have equally the same value in terms of depth and learning but do not require as many assessments and have lighter work loads.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The administration at CYA is what in my opinion makes CYA the program it is. Both the faculty, staff and administration are so engaged in working with students and helping student achieve their full potential while feeling supported abroad.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

The food is incredible- the one bad thing I would say is it would be much more feasible to be able to have more than one meal a day or meals on weekends.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I think a lot of the integration had to do with

* 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

This program has been amazing in giving me access to a beautiful culture, beautiful people, amazing professors and staff. The one thing is the expenses of being abroad as well as other American students who come from some very different environments and backgrounds that can inhibit your experience at time.


* 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 very easy- I would say that being abroad is very expensive but if you allocate your money you will be fine. This is to say that Greece is a lot more affordable than other countries for U.S. students.


* 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

You could get around without knowing Greek at all so it was encouraged but not required.

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? Beginner

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? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Administration and Staff
  • Food in the program
  • Field studies
* What could be improved?
  • Structure of classes
  • More meals allowed
  • More events to get to know others
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That you will struggle adjusting and maing friends but that it is all a mindset- try to enjoy the things around you and take Greece for what it is. There is so much beauty around you and take advantage of the time you can interact and make friends with locals- they really do want to meet you and many lasting friendships can form.