A great journey to self discovery. Past Review

By (Sociology and Global Studies, Providence College) - abroad from 08/28/2012 to 12/10/2012 with

SIT Study Abroad: Argentina - Transnationalism and Comparative Development in South America

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
The biggest shock to me was what I learned about myself and I would do it all over again. The only thing I regret is not exploring as much as I should.

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.

My reason for rating this a four out of five stars is due to the fact that I along with many others did not feel that the Spanish classes were very conducive. The classes were 3 hours long, four times a week yet we covered very little grammar, which made the 20-40 page final project slightly more difficult. Even though we did not have as many lessons in grammar as I would have aspected, the professors were incredibly helpful when it came time to help me edit my paper. Without their weekly assistance during the independent study portion of the program I don't think I would have been able finish my project.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The staff in the program are truly amazing individuals. They make themselves available at all times of the week no matter the situation they will be sure to respond.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I loved my host family, though I only had a host mom and her dog it was still an amazing experience. She was one of the few liberal parents on the program which made it a lot easier to talk about the political situation of the country with her. She was always very welcoming and would always ask me about my day. I don't think a day when by where we didn't talk for at least an hour whether it was about politics or about places I should check out over the weekend.

* Food:

My host mom always made me breakfast Monday through Friday and would always leave a little something extra for later if she knew I was going to around during the afternoon. Breakfast in Argentina isn't as big as it is in the states. In Argentina most of the population either skips breakfast or eats something like such as toast and coffee it's very rare to have a heavy meal for breakfast. This is why I felt lucky to have a bowl of fruit, a bowl of cereal, coffee, and crackers every morning. Compared to my friends I was living the good life. Dinner was sometimes a mix bag in the beginning but once I started letting my host mom know what certain things I didn't enjoy eating the meals began to improve.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I didn't feel very integrated into the culture because I mostly hung around my study abroad friends and didn't hangout with Argentines. Yet the program staff told us during orientation that this would be an issue and that it would be up to us to reach out to the community.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Yes I did have a personal experience with the healthcare system during my stay. When I fell ill I got in contact with my program director and she made sure that staff member escorted me to the hospital. The only issue I had with my experience was the cost of going to the hospital. The doctor encouraged that I get some test done to see if everything was fine, which I understandably had to pay for, yet I didn't like the fact that I had to pay a for another consultation when I wanted the results explained to me. I feel as if that should have been included in the fees for the exams.

* Safety:

Nothing ever happen to me the nights I would go out to hangout with my friends but Buenos Aires is a major city and with any major city their is bound to be some crime. The program does a good job emphasizing common sense and giving advice on how to move through the city. One just needs to always remain aware of their surroundings especially on the trains and other crowded areas for pickpockets.

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


* 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)

The stipends we received in the program help to subsidize the cost for meals; the money they provided did not cover the full cost of a typical meal. Yet they explained that the reason for that issue was due to the inflation rate in Argentina is forever rising.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 150 dollars a week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Try to bring some money US currency with you and save some for an emergency. Do not exchange money at the airport because the exchange rate is very low there. If you are using bank ATMs to get access your account make sure to use American banks because they will charge you a much lower transaction fees then foreign ones. Always due some research on different forms to access your money before going to the country.


* 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 of our assignments and classes were in Spanish so there was a definitely strong amount of encourage to practice Spanish.

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? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Spanish composition 201
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? Students should practice within the study abroad group and just in class.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

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

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • 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?
  • Excursions
  • Host family
  • Staff
* What could be improved?
  • Spanish class
  • The amount of reading should be a lot less so student can have a bigger chance to explore the city.
  • Stipends should be giving according to inflation so it will actually cover the cull cost of the meal.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How to exchange dollars for the black market rate since this would have allowed me to save a lot more money.

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 Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!