The people made the program amazing!!! Past Review

By (Carleton College) - abroad from 07/24/2016 to 11/24/2016 with

IES Abroad: Santiago - Study in Santiago

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
On my program, I navigated a big city after living in rural college towns my whole life. I formed loving and warm bonds with people I never would’ve met otherwise. I explored and grew and learned and laughed and cried and ate too many empanadas, and IES Santiago gave me the space for that. It was absolutely amazing.

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.

It was great, but not as challenging as my home university!

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program


* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?


* Food:

I'm a vegetarian and I was matched with a host family who was great about accommodating that.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I did an internship and it threw me right into Chilean culture. Host families and IES Santiago staff also help a ton with this!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

One of the staff members from IES Santiago is especially helpful with this. I was sick for about a month and a half (pollution + immunodeficiency = sick) and I was impressed by the caliber of healthcare in Chile.

* Safety:

Use common sense and you'll be totally fine. The only real issue is pick-pocketing.

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

Many study abroad programs have similar draws—small classes, hands-on learning, fantastic teachers, cultural integration, etc—and don’t get me wrong, my program definitely had all of those. However, one thing that really set the program apart was the type of student on the program, the staff at the study abroad center in Santiago, and the host families. They were absolutely fabulous.


* 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? $10-$30


* 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? Advanced
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? I take history classes in Spanish
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? Use it with other students!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
  • Hostel
* 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?
  • Students
  • Staff
  • Internship
* What could be improved?
  • Academic challenges
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? You will feel overwhelmed by the public transportation, and then you will master it.

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 Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'