Making Memories Past Review

By (Naropa University) - abroad from 01/20/2018 to 06/22/2018 with

Naropa University: Bhutan Study Abroad Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
So many lessons occurred on this trip (inside and outside the classroom). I feel more equipped to pursue future research projects in environmental fields and to pursue a technical degree. I feel like I gained a lot of insight into communal living, adapting to circumstances and intercultural-communication skills. Absolutely worthwhile!

Review Photos

Naropa University: Bhutan Study Abroad 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 Naropa program could also be considered an honors program as the reading load is quite large. The classes at the Royal University of Bhutan were a different style than I was familiar with which proved difficult.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The program leader Anne Parker is wonderful! She has lots of knowledge and experience in the region of the Himalaya which makes her a great guide. Tshering Choden from RUB is also a wonderful supportive link.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The facilities sometimes have difficulties with water and wi-fi. As long as you are adaptable this won't be an issue and will help you tap into some resourceful skills you may not have known you had.

* Food:

Delicious! I love spicy food and the Bhutanese cuisine has chilis in most of the dishes.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Living in the student housing was a link to the local culture and I found the the majority of students and community members are excited and ready to share their culture with you!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Healthcare is free in Bhutan. I visited the local clinics on a few occasions for some minor issues and the process was easeful! They practice traditional and western medicine here so whichever one you would like to pursue, you can choose

* Safety:

The college has security guards and some policies that are there to keep students safe.

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

I did do it all over again! The program is a semester long and I went through the steps to make it happen a second time!


* 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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 25-50 USD
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? You will receive more money than the local students for stipends every month. Remember that sharing is a way that we look out for each other.


* 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

Classes are in english and most of the students have really good english speaking skills. There are little courses in the local languages

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
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? none
How many hours per day did you use the language? 0
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Seek out some literature resources or listen to music

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • 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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Living with Bhutanese
  • The location of the college is in a forest!
  • Insight into Buddhist practices
* What could be improved?
  • Dzongkha language preparation
  • Exchange program for Bhutanese students to visit the United States
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had known that it was going to be so difficult to say goodbye.

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 Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!