The Best Decision I Have Made Past Review

By (Eastern Illinois University) - abroad from 06/30/2019 to 07/27/2019 with

Sogang University: Seoul - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about Korean culture, both from the classes I took and from walking around the city. It was definitely worth the time and money to study abroad to experience it.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The courses I took were mainly discussion-based and had brilliant professors. They really tried to engage the students in the class and were always available if we had questions.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The administration of their International Office was really on top of things and were always available to help it needed.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I stayed in Gonzaga Hall, which is their international dorm. It had great living space and I enjoyed having my own shower and bathroom, although that did mean we had to clean it ourselves.

* Food:

The dining food was fantastic and there were plenty of restaurants around that I could go to if I didn't want dining hall food.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

They had clubs we could join and other outings hosted by their students that took us around the city. There were also weekend trips that took us around Seoul and outside of the city.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I did not need to use their health facilities, but they were very available if we needed them.

* Safety:

I felt very safe while walking around campus and the city. I always had a buddy to walk around with, which is something I would recommend. It wouldn't be fun getting lost by yourself.

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

I really enjoyed the program and I would love the opportunity to take the other classes that were offered for the summer program.


* 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)

Things were relatively cheap in Seoul. The things that cost the most were usually any souvenirs I bought.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? About 30,000 won per week, which is about $30.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? The convenience store on campus had pretty cheap and good food you could buy. It definitely saved me money.


* 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

Unless you were taking a language course, they did not require using Korean in classes. I did pick up some of the language from other places though.

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? None
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? I did not take a Korean language course
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? Even though it seems weird, music and movies were a great way to pick up the most common phrases of the language.

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Exchange

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students
* 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?
  • Classes
  • People I met
  • Food
* What could be improved?
  • Nothing really
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish that I had learned more of the language before going. It would have made some things a lot easier, like communicating with the locals and reading signs.

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!