Breathtaking Beyond Any Words January 05, 2014

By (Geography and Cartography., Towson University) - abroad from 02/16/2013 to 07/04/2013 with

ISA Study Abroad in Wellington, New Zealand

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I can't begin to explain what I gained from this. My sense of self was enforced, and given a new facet. My host country became like my home country, and my friends became family. The breathtaking views alone are enough to leave a poet with a lifetime of imagery. It was so worthwhile. I miss it every single day!

Review Photos

GlobaLinks Learning Abroad: Wellington - Victoria University of Wellington Photo GlobaLinks Learning Abroad: Wellington - Victoria University of Wellington Photo GlobaLinks Learning Abroad: Wellington - Victoria University of Wellington Photo GlobaLinks Learning Abroad: Wellington - Victoria University of Wellington Photo GlobaLinks Learning Abroad: Wellington - Victoria University of Wellington Photo

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.

Victoria University of Wellington was an extremely modern/up-to-date schools. Courses were both challenging and interesting. Learning a new curriculum was intense, but I adapted. Teachers were great, I could not have asked for a more perfect school.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Richard was always a helpful resource.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I lived in a beautiful flat, on a hilltop, in the middle of Wellington. Lush, greenery everywhere, and beautiful views of the city...<10 minute walk to campus. Had 4 other roommates, we all got along. Great.

* Food:

Delicious food! GlobaLinks provided a traditional feast with the indigenous Maori, of New Zealand. Wellington city food is delicious, too! Great Thai, Kebabs, coffees...American food, if you'd like. And, great fish and chips!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

It felt like my home. Wellington is the coolest city on earth, as far as I am concerned

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Luckily, I had zero health concerns. When I caught a cold, I went to campus health services, with inexpensive co-pays.

* Safety:

It is always a golden rule to have a buddy, but when I walked myself home one night at 3am, I can genuinely say I did not feel a smidgen of fear for my safety. Safe, clean, friendly...I can't stress how unreal this location is

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

Finances

* 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)

Study abroad is expensive, and that's no joke. When you weigh out the quality of the experience, there are certain costs that you can't forgo. As a student, it is very, very hard to budget. There are beautiful, once in a lifetime experiences/gifts that you will want to have. Really plan the budget. New Zealand is known for its huge bungys- not to be missed!

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Groceries- about $60-70/week. Eating out/shopping = inconsistent charges. Be frugal!
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Buy at the end of the trip. You will be so tempted to buy every beautiful/unique thing you see (Wellington is huge for thrifting/one of a kind finds). Do your research, then make your purchase. ESPECIALLY with the green stone necklaces! You cannot leave NZ without a greenstone

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* 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? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Bridging Cultures Program (BCP) allowed American students attending different universities in NZ to meet for 5 days and enjoy activities such as caving, white water rafting, bungy jumping, conservation at a kiwi farm, etc.
  • The support before/after. The opportunity to be an Ambassador for GlobaLinks
  • The enthusiam of the GlobaLinks staff- all of them have studied abroad at least once, and know their stuff!
* What could be improved?
  • If I knew,
  • Then,
  • I would say.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew myself better. But you can never prepare for that. When you travel, you will find out NEW things about yourself. Do not be afraid of change :)

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.