Just Chilean Past Review

By (EDUCATION., Austin College) - abroad from 02/20/2013 to 07/14/2013 with

IFSA: Valparaiso - Chilean Universities Program, Valparaiso

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned to speak Spanish. To appreciate my culture more. I loved it.

Review Photos

IFSA-Butler: Valparaiso - Chilean Universities Program Photo IFSA-Butler: Valparaiso - Chilean Universities Program Photo

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.

The courses were challenging and required me to work very hard and ask for help.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

They helped with everything, walked us through any issues we had no matter what they were.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My first family was terrible and it took them awhile to change my family. Once they did, it was so much better to have a good family.

* Food:

Chile is not a gastronomic capital. They do what they can.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt we really had opportunities to understand the society we lived in.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

There were no health issues really. We did get sick from the water, but they had a good doctor available and it was easily correctable.

* Safety:

I never felt unsafe or uncomfortable. It's surprising how suspicious they were of everyone but i never felt threatened.

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)

Chile was a lot more expensive than I realized it would be. The transportation cost the most. There should be a way to minimize those costs.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $100-150 a week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Get a metro pass.


* 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

We were rewarded for constant use.

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? 300 level classes
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? Choose friends who can't speak English.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
  • Apartment
* 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?
  • The trips
  • the university
  • my host family
* What could be improved?
  • not trying to make everyone in the group friends
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How macho Chilean culture was and what clothes to bring