Every day a new opportunity to discover new things May 31, 2019

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 01/09/2019 to 06/15/2019 with

Seoul National University: Seoul - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I started feeling comfortable living in Korea and using Korean on a daily basis became natural. My speaking ability improved drastically by just talking with people a lot, without much language study. I explored a lot of places and had a lot of fun, and also got to experience some Korean work culture through my internship. I think my study abroad experience had all the components I had hoped it would have.

Personal Information

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The dorms are very affordable and really nice considering the cost

* Food:

The food on campus is very cheap and good. If you are vegetarian it can be hard to find food outside of the vegetarian buffet at lunchtime.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I'm not really sure, not much experience

* Safety:

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

I had so much fun in Korea and my language skills have improved drastically. I would love to have more time here.

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)

I rated 2.5 because of the guideline given but while I was spending a significant amount of money on food/transportation etc. per week, it was balanced by the fact that the dorms were very affordable and even paying for every meal separately it was much cheaper than the meal plan at my home university.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $100-150

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

The program itself did not encourage me to use the language much, but I did use the language a lot through my own motivation. I also had opportunities to use the language such as an internship and living in the dorms with Korean roommates. Through these opportunities I made friends who I spent time with and spoke Korean with often. It is also possible with the program to get by with minimal Korean because there are classes in English and most activities/groups for international students are English-based.

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? Advanced Intermediate Korean 1
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? Talk to people as much as you can. It's okay to make mistakes, even if your speaking isn't perfect it's the ability to communicate that matters.

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

  • Dorm
  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Host Family
* 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?
  • Speaking Korean a lot
  • Internship
  • Seoul is a really fun city
* What could be improved?
  • connection with Korean students
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? It's normal to panic and have no idea what to do at the beginning. No one expects you to know what to do, so it's okay to not know things. At some point it will become natural without realizing it, and that'll be a great feeling.

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.'