The Experience of a Lifetime Past Review

By (Economics, Sewanee: The University of the South) - abroad from 07/26/2015 to 11/26/2015 with

IES Abroad: Santiago - Study in Santiago

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
During semester abroad I gained confidence to communicate, adapt and find my way in another country. I gained curiosity to discover and appreciate another culture’s beauties and differences. I gained critical thinking skills that strengthened my independence, guided me through obstacles and made me more self-reliant. Most of all, I gained a sense of who I am and how I fit into a world much bigger than my home, my school or my country.

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* 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

My decision to study abroad is one I will neither regret nor forget as it provided me the opportunity to grow academically and personally. Immersing myself in a new country enriched my global understanding; however, as much as I learned about Chilean people, history and culture, I learned more about myself. Before embarking on my IES Study in Chile, I had never left the United States. I worried about how I could communicate with my host family and others. But the moment I saw the IES group at the Santiago airport, I was at ease. The program and its staff provided resources, answers, orientation and ongoing support before, during, and after my trip. Beyond addressing students’ expected nerves commencing a study abroad program, the IES staff also helped me build confidence, acclimate to the country, and encourage me to embrace the uncomfortable by stepping outside my comfort zone.


* 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? I spent on average $50 on food and transportation each week. For extra expenses such as activities and travel (plan tickets, hostels, etc.) I spent an average of $75 per week.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Try to stick to a budget plan, after the first week or so of your trip map out a flexible weekly budget. It doesn't have to be strict, but you can keep track of what you are spending money on and how much you think you will need to get through the semester.


* 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? Intermediate
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? I took 3 300 level Spanish courses before my trip.
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+

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

  • Local Students
  • 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?
  • The IES staff support
  • The flexibility and diversity of the program
  • The intense academics with strong professor-student relationship
* What could be improved?
  • Help from the Chicago IES staff through the process after being accepted and before leaving.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That everything will be alright and not to worry.

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!