An immersive experience in the language and cultural richness of Spain December 29, 2019

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 08/25/2019 to 12/22/2019 with

PRESHCO: Study Abroad in Córdoba, Spain

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
My experience was very worthwhile. My Spanish and my comfort and fluency in speaking improved in ways that never would have been possible without the immersive experience. I also learned so much from being immersed in the culture and having the incredible opportunity to see many places within Spain, each providing a unique and important perspective and learning opportunity.

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The complete language immersion and the PRESHCO program in general really helped me make significant improvements in my Spanish. I also learned so much about the culture and the experience of going about daily life in a different language. From a coursework perspective, the challenge of the courses was primarily in the language immersion aspect. However, beyond the challenges of taking university courses in Spanish, the courses did not have the same academic rigor and requirement for critical thinking and analysis of material as is the case in the courses at my home institution. That being said, the courses really helped my Spanish language abilities and the PRESHCO program provided incredible support and resources including tutors to help us with our classes and hone our Spanish.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The PRESHCO team is incredible. There are truly no words that could entirely capture how amazing they are and everything they did for all of us every single day. They provided so much support and were always there for any problem we had or whenever we needed to talk. They made us feel at home and were so caring and warm. I cannot say enough good things about them. I feel so incredibly grateful to have had Kim, Eva, Encarni, and Maribel as an important part of my PRESHCO experience.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The PRESHCO team does so much to make sure that you are comfortable with your host family and to help resolve any problems that arise.

* Food:

The program and my host family made sure all of my food allergies were accommodated.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Living with a host family really helped with cultural integration.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I luckily did not have an experience with healthcare.

* Safety:

I always felt very safe in Córdoba although it is important to pay attention to your surroundings especially in areas with a lot of tourists.

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

PRESHCO is a very unique program in the amount of support the program provides academically and personally, the travel we do as a group, the cultural reimbursements, and so many more aspects. PRESHCO also places a lot of emphasis on maintaining the use of Spanish and completely immersing yourself in Spanish which is critical for language skill development and increased fluency.

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)

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

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? SPAN 291
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+

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

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Language immersion
  • PRESHCO team/community/support system
  • Opportunity to visit many parts of Spain
* What could be improved?
  • It would have been great to have had a group larger than 9 students
  • More compañeras de conversación who were willing to come to events and participate
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had known, or rather understood, how truly challenging on such a deep level it would be to live in a different language. Although I expected it to be difficult, I had no idea what it truly meant to have to go about your daily life, from academics to the smallest interactions, in your non-native language and the sometimes emotional and mental toll it exacts to just try to understand and communicate.

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!