Cultural integration and life changing. Past Review

By (Bethel University) - abroad from 08/16/2011 to 12/17/2011 with

Richmond American International University in Florence: Florence - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
being less ecnocentric. Working on prjects with different cultures. (Marketing project with a Russian and a Bulgarian)

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Like a hotel room without a toilet and shower. Better than Bethel Universities freshman dorms. Rooms were cleaned for us on request and garbage emptied every morning if we put outside our door.

* Food:

Food was not very good at all. We were not suppose to eat lunch. Only the degree students were suppose to. The study abroad students started going anyway. Food was low quality

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The university was in a residential neighborhood. We walked past houses to go to class. Dustin Hoffman hung out at the pub by our dorm. Students from all over the world went to the university

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

We had access to the NHS of England. I never used it however. Similar to Obama care I assume

* Safety:

We lived in a posh area so it was really safe. Dustin Hoffman had a house 4 blocks away.

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


* 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)

Food prices were inflated. i.e. 5 pound foot long subs make them $8 in us money. Bought my own food for lunch and weekends when food was not served from the University.

* Was housing included in your program cost? Yes
* Was food included in your program cost? Yes
Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $75 or 50 pounds
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Have around $2500 for spending money while there because you will want to travel. around $1200 of that was spent or trips while I was there. Went on a Mediterranean cruise for $800 over fall break.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

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

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* 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?
  • Variety of students
  • University in the Center of the city
  • Ease of independent travel
* What could be improved?
  • More trips through AIFS included
  • Food
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Don't get as much out of this AIFS program as others that got to Italy or France.

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.'