Already Planning My Trip Back !! Past Review

By (Texas State University-San Marcos) - abroad from 07/30/2016 to 08/13/2016 with

Mexico Study Abroad Reflections: Comprehensive Reviews of Past Programs

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I always try to think of what I can bring to an occasion or to another country. I would suggest focusing on a nice personal gift for your host family, and something personal that you can share with your teacher or the school. I have thought about it everyday since I have been back. Being back, I am grateful, and I have been practicing more patience. When you are in a foreign country and do not speak the language, you must be patient and thoughtful to avoid being rude or frustrated. I can practice the same principle here in the U.S.; I encounter situations daily where there may be a communication and/or language barrier.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The class sizes were very small, I was in Beginners so there were only 2 of us and one teacher. The Profesora was very good. She taught us alot in two weeks from the book, but we also were online, watched some film clips, listened to popular music and watched some olympics all in Spanish. In addition, we had some trips to the bank and market to do practical education making purchases, using the bank, and intercambrio was very interesting. Two or three times a week we would do conversation Spanish Intercambrio.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Absoultutely top notch. I have nothing but great things to say about SOL Education, Eva and Yeyo were great.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The housing was really nice. I had my own room and bathroom. I really love my host mom and her family. I miss them.

* Food:

Specatacular!! I have never eaten so well in my life!! The fresh fruit, the seven mole sauces, and the coffee was out of this world. Not to mention the bakeries. I would eat Pan Dulce every day!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt totally at home and accepted with the local community there. The people were really friendly.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

No real issues. Had some travelers tummy upset the first few days, but my host family just fed me light food and herbal tea so I was right as rain the third day. If I would have had an issue, I would have known where to go.

* Safety:

i felt safe and secure the entire trip. No worries at all.

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

I fell in love with the City and its people. I am really going to go back with my wife and maybe my 4 year old daughter.


* 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 was provided with plenty of money for my trip.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $100 or so each week on coffee, souvenirs and extra activities.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Just be prepared to pay in advance for your airline tickets.


* 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

I learned more in two weeks abroad then a whole semester in the classroom.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? 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? you should do some basic vocabulary study before going

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* 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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • I loved the Zapotec and Aztec Culture.
  • The short compressed schedule worked best for me.
  • I was given everything I needed to succeed and have fun.
* What could be improved?
  • Communication or interaction with the University Study Abroad Office
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Packed more underwear!! Seriously I wish I had packed fewer shoes, shirts, and pants, and just packed more underwear. Underwear shopping in a foreign country is complicated.

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.'