A semester of personal growth and adventure July 29, 2019

By (Middlebury College) - abroad from 01/12/2019 to 05/12/2019 with

DIS Copenhagen: Semester

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Yes it was very worth while. I grew a lot as an independent individual.

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?

I was very happy with my living arrangement, but there is a very wide range of house situations even among the same type of housing, so it seems fairly random and up to luck.

* Food:

I was able to shop for myself for the majority of the semester, which was very helpful because I have dietary restrictions. However, sometimes it was hard to find stores that sold the types of food I can eat that were also covered by the food stipend that DIS gave me: certain types of beans and soy products/protein sources that I am used to eating as a vegan/vegetarian were more expensive and not in the stores covered by the stipend.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I had a visiting host family which was a wonderful experience, but apart from that, I did not really meet any Danish students our age.

* 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 would like to have met more Danish people and be more integrated into the city, but I would absolutely do this program again.

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)

I was able to stretch my food stipend about for about three months or so, so it was very manageable. Cooking with other people definitely helped. And biking everywhere helped limit the amount of money I needed for transportation!

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $40
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Cook with other people, rent a bike or walk when you can, keep track of how much you are spending, but remember you are only studying in Copenhagen once!

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? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? I took 6 years of French, but had no Danish exposure.
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? Try out your danish in the grocery store or on the bus.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
* 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?
  • Location
  • Friends
  • Biking Culture
* What could be improved?
  • Living with Danes, not Americans
  • Expanding food stipend selections
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? The time flies - make an effort to meet local students!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Criminology and Criminal Justice in Scandinavia

Course Department: Criminology
Instructor: Anne Okkels Birk
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This was a challenging class because Anne has high expectations for all of her students, regardless of their academic background in criminology. This was a very cool class because we studied the Scandinavian open prison system and got to go to an open prison, too.
Credit Transfer Issues: No issues - it was a general credit for me.
Course Name/Rating:

Travel Writing

Course Department:
Instructor: Tommy Heisz
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This was the first journalism class I’ve ever taken, and we got to write three different papers for this class about experiences we had during our semester. It was a lot of fun and something totally different from what I am used to taking at Middlebury. Tommy is a travel writer himself so it was very cool to see his writing as well.
Credit Transfer Issues: This was a general credit for me, but check to see if you want something more specific to transfer before you go! It makes your life a lot easier.
Course Name/Rating:

Danish Language and Culture

Course Department: Danish
Instructor: Suzanne de Cunha Bang
Instruction Language: English/Danish
Comments: A very fun and engaging course. Suzanne was a wonderful teacher who was eager to teach us both the new language and all about Danish culture. She was supportive of all of us as we learned the language.
Credit Transfer Issues: This would be a general credit, so no issues.
Course Name/Rating:

Applied Psychotherapy

Course Department: Psychology
Instructor: Kamilla Lange
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This was an amazing course all about the different approaches to therapy - I would highly recommend this for anyone interested in learning more about all different kinds of approaches to treatment for psychological suffering.
Credit Transfer Issues: I have yet to transfer credits, but I believe this should count as an elective for psychology.
Course Name/Rating:

European Clinical Psychology

Course Department: Psychology
Instructor: Lars Rossen
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This was a great class for anyone interested in the history of clinical psychology and for anyone who is interested in healthcare and the differences in Danish approaches and treatments vs. the US. Lars was a wonderful instructor and was helpful, friendly and knowledgeable. A course like this is unavailable at Middlebury, so I was happy for the opportunity to take this class.
Credit Transfer Issues: I have yet to transfer credits, so I am unsure. I know this class counts towards the psychology major.