Cultural and linguistic immersion in an amazing, lively city January 09, 2024

By (Duke University) - abroad from 08/22/2023 to 12/04/2023 with

SIT Study Abroad: Argentina - Public Health in Urban Environments

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
In addition to the tangible class knowledge, living and figuring out a city on my own proved to be a great learning experience. Budgeting, figuring out public transit, and exploring a new place is a form of learning on its own.

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.

Intellectually stimulating coursework for people interested in public health and health policy. Mostly essay and presentation-based assignments. The work is balanced and leaves you with lots of free time to explore the city.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Program staff were so caring and thoughtful.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Host family was amazing. Their apartment was comfortable, and I had my own bedroom and bathroom. Dinners with them were some of my favorite memories.

* Food:

Host family cooked great food. Quite a few restaurants were hit or miss. As a vegetarian, I had options, but the food is on the more bland side (they don't eat a lot of spice).

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Living in my neighborhood and with a host family greatly facilitated the integration. It's always tough as an international student, but the city is navigable and accessible to those who would like to venture out of their bubbles.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Buenos Aires as a whole felt very safe, even late into the night.

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

I had two goals from study abroad: study a health care system and live in a Spanish-speaking region. This program accomplished both and exceeded my expectations in all categories.


* 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)

Program gave us a weekly money stipend, so out of pocket costs were pretty minimal. All meals were covered with this stipend with some left to spare. Only paid out of pocket for discretionary spending.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Excluding trips, around $50 per week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Cash is always the best, and Western Union gives great rates on transfers. Eat at home when you can because the host family is supposed to provide breakfast. Try to book trips a month in advance for better rates. As you approach summer, it gets to peak travel season so prices can go up.


* 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

Spanish immersion in all classes and homestay

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Advanced
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? 300-level college Spanish course
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 as many people as you can. Try to talk with friends in your program in Spanish when you are out. Read the daily news and watch YouTube in Spanish!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* 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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Home stay with host family
  • The arts and culture scene in the city
  • Affordability
* What could be improved?
  • Food options for a vegetarian
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had the tools to find spaces where local university-age kids spent their time. Because we take classes with only our cohort, it can be challenging to find similarly aged students from the city without extra effort.

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.'