Challenging, but worth it Past Review

By (Political Science and Government, St. Mary's College of Maryland) - abroad from 08/24/2015 to 05/14/2016 with

Sciences Po: Paris - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
How to budget on a weekly basis, how to balance course work and travel, and how to interact with new people from different cultures

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.

Academically it was challenging in that the different professors were not consistent in what they wanted from course to course. It was also difficult to know what was expected of your work and receive feedback on what you had done.

* 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

This program best benefited my majors at my home university and provided me with more in depth knowledge in field areas that weren't available to me at SMCM. I was also able to meet many different international students who are definitely going to be life-long friends.


* 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)

2.5, it's hard to spend less than $100/week on expenses

Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? buy and cook your own food, it's much cheaper than dining out or buying from the cafeterias


* 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

In Paris, a lot of people speak English and it was up to you to pick classes in French or take a French grammar class

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? Intermediate
How many hours per day did you use the language?

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Exchange

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • N/A
* 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? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Course material, subjects
* What could be improved?
  • help finding housing
  • administrative processes
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How hard it is to find good housing in Paris, the difference in how courses are taught, how bureaucracy and administration are not efficient

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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The Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.