My forever home! Past Review

By (University of Vermont) - abroad from 01/15/2018 to 05/04/2018 with

IES Abroad: Paris - Business & International Affairs

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned to always go outside of my comfort zone, because when I do, I learn so much more about myself and what I can handle!

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I loved all of my professors, and Chris and Nathalie in the BIA Center really wanted to hear your opinions and suggestions about if professors were great or not. But at every university there are going to be amazing professors and not so amazing, because everyone's opinions are different!

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Peggy, Nathalie, Laurie, Debbie, Chris they were all amazing!! Professional, but also willing to come down to earth and relate to students.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My host mom, was amazing! She really took me in as her 5th child!

* Food:

It's Paris, need I say more? :)

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The first month was really rough, but once I got more confident, and realized that even if I did make a mistake, the stranger would understand what I'm saying, it's no problem!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I personally didn't have any problems, but some of my friends did, and they didn't have any problems!

* Safety:

Paris is a big international city, students need to be smart.

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)

I had a budget of $500 USD a month, and a credit card for purchases for souvenirs for my family. But that had NOTHING to do with IES, it was all about me, not wanting anything to limit me to get the cultural experiences that I wanted.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $USD500-600/month
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Only travel if you have the money to. I didn't have a lot of money for traveling, so I only traveled twice, and the rest of the time I stayed in Paris where it was easy to do things for free (metro with my monthly pass and free entrance to museums).


* 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

It really helped build my french skills, and my confidence speaking the language.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? A Mid-Level french grammar class (I got a D-)
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? USE IT! It's going to be weird and awkward, but just deal with it until it doesn't anymore!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
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?
  • Center Staff
  • Course Options
  • Meeting new friends
* What could be improved?
  • More family meals (even if cost has to increase)
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That it's okay to not know anyone, and you will make AWESOME friends!

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 Networker
An active student leader, it was important for you to network abroad as well. Once overseas, you sought out student clubs, volunteered with local organizations, or attended community events. You encouraged your friends join you, and often considered how you could reflect your international experiences in a resume.