Incredible Semester in Ecuador June 26, 2015

By (University of Pennsylvania) - abroad from 01/28/2015 to 05/09/2015 with

SIT Study Abroad: Ecuador - Development, Politics and Languages

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned so much about the diversity of Ecuador--the culture, the languages, the people. I made lifelong friends, I practiced my Spanish daily, I picked up some new Kichwa phrases, and I learned new ways to think about things like sustainability and development.

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The host country program administration was impressive, welcoming, talented, and overall incredible.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Home stays were very welcoming and accommodating for the most part.

* Food:

I had some challenges with food sometimes, but that's to be expected in a new environment. Overall, there was enough food, and it was often good.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Although cities can be dangerous anywhere, the program did a good job of equipping us for any situations that might have arisen. I felt safe in Ecuador.

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

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)

Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Always share taxis if you can! Don't go crazy every time you go to an artisan market--there will always be another one.

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

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
How many hours per day did you use the language?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
  • Hostel
* 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?
  • how much we traveled around the country
  • how culturally responsible I felt the program and administrators were
  • free time to explore and get to know Ecuador on our own
* What could be improved?
  • more preparation for the ISP portion
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I felt very prepared for the program.

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.