This is a unique experience Past Review

By (Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies, Middlebury College) - abroad from 09/07/2015 to 12/20/2015 with

SIT Study Abroad: IHP - Human Rights: Foundations, Challenges and Advocacy

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
This program is completely unique. It is extremely intensive and challenging. There is hardly any free time and at times hugely frustrating and disorganized. But it is also one of the best things I have ever done in terms of expanding my world view, critical thinking skills, and personal growth. The experiences you get access to are unparalleled.

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.

While I learned an immeasurable amount through my experiences, the structured academics (the 4 "courses" I was supposed to be taking) were next to worthless on this program.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

It depended on the country. Over all it was good.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

It depended on the country and family

* Food:

Depended on the family

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Very well integrated

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

With the extremity of the program, SIT should hire a qualified fellow to travel with the students. Our fellow was dismissive, cold, and extremely unhelpful with both physical and mental problems.

* Safety:

As safe as you a group of 25 American students in a Syrian refugee camp can be?

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)

Very well. SIT also gave us stipends, and all of the countries are quite affordable.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? It depended on the country


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Other
  • Host Family
  • Hotel
  • 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?
  • the visiting lectures
  • the site visits
  • the comparative nature
* What could be improved?
  • organization
  • academics
  • guidance
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I fully understood how little independence I would have on this trip. It is very very time intensive, and you basically have no control over what you eat, how much you sleep, whether or not you can exercise, who you are spending time with, and what you want to do. BUT, it is a truly remarkable trip, and I gained more through it than any other experience I have ever had.

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.'

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:


Course Department: NA
Instructor: NA
Instruction Language: English
Comments: As stated before, this program's 4 "courses" were hugely disappointing. They were unstructured, not at all challenging, and inseparable.
Credit Transfer Issues: