An escape from the monotony of typical college course. Past Review

By (Environmental Studies., Westminster College, UT) - abroad from 06/22/2014 to 08/07/2014 with

Round River Conservation Studies - Taku River Watershed Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
The most useful and interesting thing I learned was how to do actual fieldwork. This was a wonderful change of pace from the more theoretical classroom approach to environmental studies. Also the countless memories of sharing fun times with amazing people in truly immense natural spaces is something I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

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?

* Food:

* 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


* 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? $10-20


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Other
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* 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? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Observing wild animals such as grizzlies, mountain goat, caribou, and others.
  • Interacting with the indigenous Tlingit people and hearing about their first hand experiences with issues we in the classroom usually only read about discuss as outsiders.
  • Simply being in an area with so few people and such open wilderness.
* What could be improved?
  • Make it longer so the somewhat grueling academic pace didn't detract from the fact that one is in such a special area.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish that I would have prepared myself more for the field work and science side of things. Prior to this my college experience was mainly focused on the humanities and I had a shallow understanding the hard sciences. Taking courses in biology, botany, or ecology the semester before would have been invaluable preparation. Also reading a natural history book or cultural studies book about the area would have been useful to provide context and get one thinking critically about the area. I read an ethnographic text about the Tlingit before going however it was a linguistic study of the people and was really too in depth to be helpful. A broad account of the area would have been nice just to set up the semester with a little background knowledge.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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The Avid Adventurer
The wardrobe you packed was better suited for a semester of camping than club hopping. Outdoorsy, you might forgo a crazy night out for an early all-day adventure. You'd rather take in the rich culture of an old town than the metropolis of a modern city, but for you getting off the grid is ideal.