The best experience in my life so far! Past Review

By (Biology, General., Savannah State University) - abroad from 07/07/2012 to 08/05/2012 with

Savannah State University: San Jose - Study Abroad in Costa Rica

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained knowledge of a different culture, language, and a way of life. The total experience was definatly worthwhile and I would do it again and again if I could.

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: Academia Centroamericana de Español
How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

This was one of the best experiences of my life.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Everyone that worked at the Costa RIcan school were very nice, I still communicate with them today.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

I give the meals an A+++.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The locals were very nice, they showed me a very good time.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

You do not need to get vaccines of any kind before going to Costa Rica, it is a safe place.

* Safety:

The overall city was great, it gets dark around six o'clock every night, so it's ALWAYS smart to walk with a partner or take a taxi.

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

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)

It really just depends on how an individual likes to shop, most of the students who were with me brought lunch, ice-cream and souvenirs.

* 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? $50
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Clothes are more expensive in Costa Rica, so what ever is required for the trip buy it in the U.S. also its nice to bring snacks so you want have to buy lunch all the time.

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

We lived with a family who only spoke Spanish, when we would go to stores everyone spoke Spanish. There was rarely a time when you will come across someone who speaks English except the people that worked at our school, but when you do meet someone who can speak English it is somewhat of a relief.

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? Spanish 1102
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? DO NOT BE AFRAID of learning the language, that is probably one of the worst things you can do, not try. Emerge yourself in every way possible. Practice, practice, practice! Talk to locals at stores or local restaurants, ask your host family and teachers lots of questions!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • Geographical Region/Climate
  • Food
  • Excursions
* What could be improved?
  • nothing
  • to
  • me
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? The cry we were in was not rally as dangerous as I thought it would be so I would have brought nicer clothes.