Growth, Challenges, and Joy January 11, 2022

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 10/08/2021 to 12/23/2021 with

Sea Education Association: Caribbean Reef Expedition

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned so much about marine biology research and different lab techniques. I also learned a ton about sailing and made life-long friends. It was very much worthwhile.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Would have liked it to be more rigorous for those with a science background.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The component in Woods Hole and on SSV Corwith Cramer was great. The housing in St. Croix was historically insensitive and traumatizing for students of color to have to stay on a former plantation.

* Food:

Cooked for ourselves on land. Boat food is not great. You don't do this program for the food.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I had several health problems while studying abroad. The local healthcare system in St. Croix was easy to work with and took insurance. I needed a tetanus shot within the last 7 years to attend this program.

* Safety:

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

Although there were challenges, I learn so much. This was a life-changing experience.


* 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? $15 at most
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Buy all the equipment for living on the boat and doing reef surveys second-hand or cheap if you need to save money. Also, reach out to SEA if you cannot afford certain types of equipment. They can loan fins and snorkles to students who really can't afford them.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Other
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Other
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?
  • Making friends
  • Sailing
  • All the snorkling!!
* What could be improved?
  • Diversity and Inclusion
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That I was going to get sea sick and to bring a water bottle that is easy to clean.

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 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.