Health and Community is awesome! Past Review

By (Sociology., Wellesley College) - abroad from 08/17/2013 to 12/15/2013 with

SIT Study Abroad: IHP - Health and Community: Globalization, Culture and Care (Fall 2)

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about health worldwide, and I gained a lot of important travel and cultural competency skills.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The program itself was fantastic, the classes, not so much.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Very country-dependent. India was incredibly smooth and well-run, while Vietnam had a few more kinks to work out.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Homestays were an integral part of the experience. While not always the most comfortable, it was wonderful to live with families.

* Food:

I loved the food, although sometimes lunch stipends were not quite enough to cover a full meal.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

We were in homestays, which was great, but we were pretty much scheduled with the other participants from about 9-5 every day.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I got drug-resistant E. Coli and had to spend three days in a Vietnamese hospital. The program took good care of me, and people visited me everyday, but reintegration was hard and it didn't feel like I could make up the time I'd lost.

* Safety:

Be really careful about valuables in Cape Town.

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)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

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

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • Homestays
  • Guest lectures
  • Rural stays
* What could be improved?
  • Inadequate cultural preparation in Vietnam
  • Classes weren't very good, professors were very inexperienced
  • More effort towards group cohesion
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? The schedule is completely different every day, and you can't plan vacation or weekend trips without approval from staff.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

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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.