Be comfortable with the uncomfortable! Have an adventure! January 28, 2020

By (Louisiana State University - Baton Rouge) - abroad from 12/31/2020 to 01/12/2020 with

International Business Seminars: Winter SE Asia - Thailand and Vietnam!

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I experienced so much in SE Asia, but I think the most important thing I took away was the culture. It was completely different from the Western way of life. Not better or worse but just different, and it works for them. I come back with a more open mind, and I am more prepared for a dynamic environment.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

IBS offered a truly immersive study abroad experience. On our company visits, we learned how integral culture and values are in international markets. To not only hear about this from executives and professionals, but to also observe this first hand in the streets of Thailand and Vietnam, was truly a enlightening experience.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Pleasant and patient. I could not have asked for a better administration. Objectives were clearly laid out, and I was constantly learning. I felt connected with our leaders. I would definitely have another trip with all of them all over again.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Wonderful sites. We stayed at four-starred hotels that were not so far from entertaining destinations.

* Food:

What can I say? Easily my favorite aspect of the trip. The uniqueness and variety of food from savory to sweet is a dream come true. The only problem is having to choose between so many options! I highly recommend the street foods, and come with an open mind.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

There will always be some level of separation to fully integrate with the locals when you only spend 5 or 6 days at a destination. That's not to take away form the experience. The locals were very polite and welcoming. I never felt unsafe.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Assistance with health issues was wonderful. Joining a trip with mostly unfamiliar faces, it was a pleasant surprise how caring everyone is. When someone felt unwell, another person would always be there to assist.

* Safety:

SE Asia may be scary to the inexperienced travelers, especially the traffic. Your instructors and guides will inform you how to navigate and of any dangers. I felt right at home walking the streets. I suggest traveling in groups so that you may figure it out together. I would suggest to have confidence, and don't be too distracted from the many sights.

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

Although I would like to go back to SE Asia, I'd would not be my first option, because I would prefer to have new experiences. If I did return to the same trip, I would not complain one bit. There are some things about SE Asia that will never get boring.


* 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 think a lot of people will spend nearly $200 USD in each city, but that does include souvenirs and extracurricular activities.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? >$200
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Food cost was a major component in my budget, and that can significantly decrease if you opt for street food instead of dining out. Bargaining is another skill that is well accepted.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

We were encouraged to use some local phrases. We learned how to greet and give thanks. Activities were involved that helped us interact with some locals.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? None

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Hotel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Experiences share with people
  • Food
  • Exploring the cities
* What could be improved?
  • Transition from landing to first day
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew how amazing the people going on the trip with me would be. To share experiences with so many wonderful people was delightful. Even though I was halfway across the world, these people made it feel just like home.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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The Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.