Panama City: Lots of Skyscappers and Lots of Rewarding Experiences Past Review

By (Business Administration, Trinity University) for

Florida State University: Panama City - Florida State University at Panama

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about myself and what I wanted to seek in the future. The stuff you learn might be completely different though.

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.

A fair number of the professors were adjuncts so they took it as as a side job. There were very good professors like Leyva who teaches History of South America and other international relations courses. This program has a lot of international studies/relation courses. They also have general liberal arts. The professors overall were ok.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

They are not very organized. It seems they are sometimes underfunded by Tallahassee and will try to earn money through various methods like teaching English as a second language late at night. If you tell the administration to do something they aren't very fast. If you want them to act instantly threaten to call Tallahassee and they WILL act.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

You live in the City of Knowledge right in front of the Miraflores Locks of the Panama Canal. Every time I went to class I would see boats pass by the canal. It was very nice. The houses themselves are old, decently kept, military houses back from when Americans were there. Some of the houses are nicer than other. I had a private room and so did everyone else. I heard though that if there are a lot of people, they will share rooms. There was a living room, kitchen, bathrooms, etc. There are some nearby facilities (walking distance) like a pool and a gym students can go to for free.

* Food:

I cooked for myself and I am not a very good cook. I can only blame myself though :(

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Best part of the program. They take you to about eight activities that range from white water rafting to flying you to islands off the Caribbean. Look up "San Blas Panama" to see what I am talking about.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

The RA (full time RA, that is his job) will take you to the hospital if you need to go. Panama has some sketchy areas, avoid El Chorrillo. If you want to go to Casco Viejo, which is a fun and cultural world heritage site, you have to go through some sketchy areas.

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? A lot of money will go to taxis and food. I would say $50 minimum expenses to $100. This is assuming you are spending reasonably. You could easily spend $300 by going to the casinos, buying bottles at the club, and what not. $75 to $125 sounds good for going out to clubs occasionally, eating out and at home, and having general fun,
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? No really unanticipated expenses. Make sure to bring cash when you travel out in the country since you might not find an ATM nearby and not all place (especially small ones) take credit card. Most places in the city take credit card but there might be a $5 minimum for example.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

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  • Other
* Who did you live with?

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  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

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  • Local Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? If you are learning Spanish or studying international relations this is the program for you. FSU is surrounded by UN offices, so if you contact them early you could intern with the UN for example.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

History of South America

Course Department:
Instructor: Leyva
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Amazing professor, gets off track easily but his stories are spectacular. Admires Francisco de Miranda. He is straight forward of what he expects of students, no surprises. You will learn in this class.
Credit Transfer Issues: Credit transfered.