Amazing European experience in a small town that is absolutely beautiful! January 30, 2017

By (Psychology, Brandeis University) - abroad from 08/19/2016 to 12/22/2016 with

Maastricht University: Center for European Studies, Semester Programmes

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained friendships that will last forever, and I have become much more confident in myself and much more independent.

Review Photos

Maastricht University: Center for European Studies, Semester Programs Photo Maastricht University: Center for European Studies, Semester Programs Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The academics are hard, especially since Maastricht University uses a different style of teaching, but if you work hard then you will be fine.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

No dining halls, so the food is up to you. Cooking was really nice for me and I could also go out and eat whenever I wanted.

* 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

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)

Since Maastricht is a smaller town, it isn't as expensive as living in London or Paris or a large European city. The city is very affordable!

Language

* 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

Most everyone in the Netherlands speaks English as well as Dutch, so getting around wasn't an issue with English, but it was fun to use the Dutch that we had learned.

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? Beginner
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 the app Duolingo, it will really help!

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

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?
  • The ability to travel around Europe quite easily
  • Living in an amazing town such as Maastricht
* What could be improved?
  • The academics can be challenging at times
  • Dutch is a difficult language
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? One of the best decisions I have made!