I built a life for myself in Buenos Aires January 06, 2024

By (International Relations, Macalester College) - abroad from 08/18/2023 to 12/04/2023 with

SIT Study Abroad: Argentina - Social Movements and Human Rights

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I grew significantly in my Spanish ability. I also gained a sense of independence that I did not in 3 years of college in the United States. It was incredibly worthwhile and will inform how I think about what I want to do/where I want to live after college.

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.

The academic side of the program was thoughtful and organized. The directors really help clarify the differences between expectations of students in the US and Argentina—schoolwork during this program felt rigorous, but not competitive, with flexibility from professors. The trips to the north and south of the country complement the coursework and break up time in the city. The pace of the courses can feel very quick and the trips can be tiring, but it is entirely worth it to be able to take advantage of all that the program has to offer.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The second I arrived at the airport in Argentina, I was greeted by incredibly kind, thoughtful, and organized staff that completely set the tone for the rest of the semester. All the program coordinators are amazing, willing to help with anything and everything and completely dedicated to ensuring that all students are happy and comfortable.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My home-stay situation was also better than I could have imagined. My host parents were wonderful and welcoming and understood that I needed to balance creating relationships with them, exploring the city, classwork, and friends. I was able to visit my host family after I left and imagine that I will do so in the future too!

* Food:

The food was great! Breakfast and dinner are eaten with host families, and a stipend is provided for lunches.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

My favorite part of the program and the city of Buenos Aires was the people. Everyone is incredible kind, inclusive, and patient with language-learners. There are tons of opportunities to get involved with different communities or explore the city. You have to take initiative to engage social events outside the program, but it is incredibly easy to find things to do!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I did not personally have medical needs, but I know program staff was incredibly attentive when issues popped up. Local healthcare is easily accessible. The program does not require any specific vaccines, although I got a few for purposes of travelling after my program ended.

* Safety:

I felt safe throughout my time in Buenos Aires. The orientation is incredibly helpful to orient yourself in the city, learn how things work, and tips for safety in a big city. These were helpful as I became accustomed to the areas I spent time in.

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

The people. The people on and in charge of this program are wonderful. The people in Buenos Aires are kind, inclusive, and welcoming. I created many relationships during my time there that will impact me forever.


* 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)

Given the economic situation in Argentina at the time, it was comparatively easy to live on a student's budget. The program also provides money for meals not eaten with your host family, which is very helpful.

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? Think ahead about what sorts of activities you will want to do while you're abroad and plan accordingly!


* 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

All classes and communication with staff was default in Spanish, with the option for Spanglish/English when needed!

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? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? 305
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? I would focus on vocabulary—grammar and local language comes when you're there!

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?
  • The people
  • The trips
  • The content
* What could be improved?
  • Research Methods and Ethics course
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew that we would get stipends for lunch! Other than that, I feel like much of what I didn't know before the program I couldn't until I arrived in Argentina.

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 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.