My Favorite Place in the World Past Review

By (Sleep and Chronobiology Research, Roberts Wesleyan College) - abroad from 02/02/2015 to 06/30/2015 with

EuroScholars: Zurich - University of Zurich

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
So much. I don't know how to put it into words. It improved my scientific knowledge drastically and made me infinitely more confident. It also expanded my worldview and opened up many options for my future.

Review Photos

EuroScholars: Zurich - University of Zurich Photo EuroScholars: Zurich - University of Zurich Photo EuroScholars: Zurich - University of Zurich Photo EuroScholars: Zurich - University of Zurich Photo

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Very helpful, email responses were quick and informative. In person meeting was also an option, which I found to be very helpful.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Honestly the only bad thing was having to clean a communal kitchen (which was sometimes very messy). However, you never clean alone and it is only several times per month. The location is absolutely amazing and perfect, one tram stop from the main UZH campus, and 4 tram stops from the Zürich HB (main train station). It is very safe, I never had any problems. The rooms are single, spacious with high ceilings, have a very nice window, and new furniture. Also the mattress was very comfortable. Also, there was a rooftop available for everyone's use with a great view of the city. I stayed at the Culmannstrasse WOKO Building.

* Food:

I completely cooked all of my own food. Eating out is very expensive, but amazing anywhere in Switzerland. Grocery shopping in Germany is the best option as the food is about a quarter of the price in Germany. For food shopping go to Kaufland in Waldshut, Germany. For clothes shopping go to Konstanz, Germany. While in Zürich, make sure to check out Mövenpick for Swiss ice cream and Sprüngli for chocolate.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

You are responsible for your own healthcare in Switzerland, the University does give some suggestions, but the cheapest and best option for students is SwissCare.

* Safety:

There was never a single time that I felt unsafe in the entirety of Switzerland. The city of Zürich is amazingly safe, so there will most likely be no issues. Train stations always have SBB officers, military personnel, and police, so it has a very safe feel even in the middle of the night. Furthermore, I have never head of anything bad happening in Zürich.

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)

This depends a lot of wether or not you are going out to eat versus cooking for yourself. It also depends a lot on if you buy your food in Switzerland in Germany. I was able to live off of less than $200 per month on food while shopping in Germany. Personal expenses such as public transport can be anywhere from minimal to 240 CHF per month depending on where you want to go.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $50/50 CHF
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? YES. Get gleis 7 and shop in Waldshut, Germany. Bring a cary-on suit case to make bringing grocery back on the trains easier. I had a transport pass for all of Switzerland for only 240 CHF per month, this was great because I never had to worry about buying additional tickets and this also includes buses, boats, trains, trams, and some cable cars. It is the best value, and you can go anywhere anytime for basically free. Also, learn German.


* 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? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? I had completed the highest level at my University in French, but here I needed to learn German.
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? Rosetta Stone! Although it is very difficult to learn High German while in Switzerland as they speak Swiss German. However, if you ask nicely they will switch the High German to speak with you. Or English if you do not speak German. If you visit less populated places or Germany boarder towns, a knowledge of German is very helpful because frequently they do not speak English.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • International Students
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?
  • Location - Zürich
  • Working in the Lab
  • BIO 360 Course
* What could be improved?
  • Housing - kitchen cleaning arrangements
  • Help with finding affordable healthcare
  • More information about Swiss government fees prior to arival
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew more about the visa/permit application process that occurs in Switzerland after arrival (there is a 103 CHF fee that you have to pay, and some additional expenses). Also, SwissCare is the best healthcare to get and it is 89 CHF per month.

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!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

BIO 360

Course Department: Topics in Neurogenetics
Instructor: Steven Brown
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This course was one of the most rewarding courses I have ever taken. It was challenging, but at the same time not overwhelming. I learned how to read, understand, and evaluate scientific articles at a high level. The professor was excellent and very knowedgeable and encouraged class discussion. He would also discuss topics of interest with the students, and it was one of my favorite courses of college. The class was discussion-based and consisted of myself, five other students (mostly Swiss) and the professor. Two articles are assigned for weekly reading/discussion, class meets 2 hours per week, and there is a paper presentation at the end of the course.
Credit Transfer Issues: No issue whatsoever.