The Best Three Months of Your Life Past Review

By (Emerson College) - abroad from 01/20/2012 to 04/18/2012 with

Emerson College: Kasteel Well: The Netherlands

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I matured so much and discovered so much about myself that I don't think I would learned or realized without doing thing program. It was so worthwhile. I wish I was still there!

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 classes definitely require work put into them. They often seemed even more demanding than at the Boston campus, in part due to the fact that most weekends were filled with traveling so you had less time to get the work done in. The professors are really understanding though and will work with you to get your work done and provide any assistance you may need.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

OSA, Chester Lee, Dulcia, Rob Duckers, Huber and everyone else is FANTASTIC! They are all so helpful, caring and wonderful people!

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The VB could use an update. The stairs are really steep and you can hear people talking two rooms over. The atmosphere is wonderful, but it could use some help. The Main Castle rooms look spectacular.

* Food:

It's really quite pleasant, it just gets repetitive after a while.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I did a bit of traveling on my own, so I was able to absorb the culture a little more internally than some of my peers. I also got really close to some of the local people so I got to experience some day to day Dutch activities and lifestyles. I would say the program could use more emphasis on absorbing the Dutch the culture and traveling more in the country than all over Europe.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I actually brought home food poisoning after one trip and OSA was wonderful in taking care of me during a very unpleasant illness.

* Safety:

I honestly never felt like I was in danger in Well or abroad. They really teach us how to respond to things that may make us feel uncomfortable and what to do in tough situations. Having a travel partner also alleviates a lot of safety concerns you may have.

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


* 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 really depends on where you are and what you are doing. Southern countries like Italy and Spain are easier to save money because things are cheaper and northern countries like Denmark and Sweden are more expensive. But, it seems most people spent around $200 a weekend between eating, drinks and souvenirs.

* Was housing included in your program cost? Yes
* Was food included in your program cost? Yes
Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Well dining hall food was provided during the week. But probably around $150 each week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Budget yourself. Figure out what souvenirs you want to get and how much you're willing to spend. Also have a food budget, a drinks budget, and so on to keep track of what you're spending.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* 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 community you build with your fellow Castle dwellers and the faculty and staff.
  • The ability to travel all around Europe so easily.
  • The people of Well!!!
* What could be improved?
  • Preparing the students on what is expected and needed for the Castle before they leave.
  • Making the program longer!!
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Take the time to go around the Netherlands the town of Well. It's the only time you'll ever have this experience!