Changed my life in so many great ways. Past Review

By (Film/Video and Photographic Arts., Ithaca College) - abroad from 01/28/2012 to 05/29/2012 with

SIT Study Abroad: India - Sustainable Development and Social Change

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Global capitalism and patriarchy dominate...local experience is being flattened out, cut up to look the same everywhere...the so-termed "modernization." I learned I don't know much about the world. Reality is so much more complicated than my American perspective allowed. I cannot express how valuable this experience feels. I will see many things differently from now on. I will also do more and go more places throughout the rest of my life.

Review Photos

SIT Study Abroad: India - Sustainable Development and Social Change Photo SIT Study Abroad: India - Sustainable Development and Social Change Photo SIT Study Abroad: India - Sustainable Development and Social Change Photo

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.

There was a lot of reading and a few papers. We had to do brief presentations on sites visited, on temples, Hindu deities, etc. There was a month of independent study toward the end of the program. This part especially influenced my experience in India. Life-changing. And the results included a scholarly research paper and an experimental film.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The staff contributing immensely to the high quality of the experience. Fully competent and extra passionate people.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The homestay experience added so much. My homestay dad held a high position at the National Museum and I had a host mom that taught English to little kids. I also had two brothers in high-school. I will always look back fondly on sitting at the dinner table eating homecooked Indian food and talking with the family.

* Food:

I wasn't really into Indian food when I went there. It also made me sick a lot, so I give it a lower rating.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I could have done much more, but I felt that I was experiencing the society and culture. I didn't feel as though I was just looking at this Other place.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

My friend was bitten by a dog. She went to the clinic that the program recommended. She saw a doctor and was administered a shot and given a prescription for medicinal treatments. Easy in, easy out. Only cost $15 to see the doctor and another $15 for all the medicines.

* Safety:

I didn't fear crime, but the roads are dangerous. No person on my program was seriously injured, but a few of us were clipped by sideview mirrors. You had to be aware of your surroundings since the sidewalk might just stop or there might be an open drain with sewage below or there might just be a pile of cow poop. Wash hands very often. Don't eat food off the street. Look both ways before crossing a street- even a one-way street...sometimes two-wheelers drive up the shoulder in the wrong direction.

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)

An average metro ride in Delhi cost me 35 cents. An auto-rickshaw ride ranged from 50 cents to 3 dollars. I bought some shirts and pants for about $10. Food ranged from 80 cents to 10 dollars. Never more than 10 for a full meal.

* Was housing included in your program cost? Yes
* Was food included in your program cost? Yes
Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $10
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Medicines are much cheaper there. You can buy doxycycline anti-malaria meds at any local drug store and you do not need prescriptions.


* 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? None
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? None
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? Memorize the script before you leave if possible. Don't scrutinize over pronunciation if you are at home learning solo. You will get that when you are immersed in the culture.

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? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Independent Study Project
  • Homestay
  • Went on many trips as a group. About 22 days traveling
* What could be improved?
  • Academics -too broad a scope.
  • Exposure to Indian students -didn't meet any students from local universities.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I'm glad I went into it not knowing much at all. No expectations made the experience so present and satisfying.