This trip and program changed my life and I wish I could relive it all tomorrow! March 03, 2019

By (University of Kentucky) - abroad from 09/24/2018 to 12/21/2018 with

Sol Education Abroad - Study Abroad in Spain at University of Granada

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
100% 100x it was worth every stress, signed paper, email and dollar. I learned how to be an adult, how to budget well, how to use my Spanish speaking skills while living and learning in a new and completely different culture and country. I was able to travel outside my host country and explore more of the world, gaining a better understanding of it and myself. And, more than anything I met some incredible people and made lifelong friendships.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The level that I placed into matched the intensity of the courses I took. Each class challenged me as a student in a different way, making it easy to learn something new each and every class experience.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The On-site administration was terrific! The directors in Granada, Spain were fantastic. Not only were they very organized in a professional manner but made it feel as though they were your friends not only your directors. When traveling on excursions they made sure to challenge you with speaking Spanish and also having fun enjoying the places visited.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I was extremely satisfied with my host family. They were incredible people who truly felt like family at the end of the program. Each and every single day my family would welcome me and my roommate from classes making it feel like a home shortly after arriving to the country.

* Food:

The food was incredible. I haven't eaten so well in my life. My host family made it a priority to keep us fed but also healthy, incorporating fruits and vegetables all while showing the unique culture of Spanish food.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

After a couple of weeks living in Granada, Spain I felt like it was home. I didn't feel like some abroad student but actually a member of the city, walking to class, going to restaurants, buying groceries, etc. Along with these things, our program made sure to introduce us to new people on our excursions and to provide intercambios at local places to meet natives.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I never had to go to the doctor, thank the Lord, but I heard some students who did and they said the experience was great. Clean hospitals and clinics with quick care. Sol provides health care for their students and makes it clear, quick and easy if necessary to go to the doctor with a director always accompanying you.

* Safety:

Granada, Spain was a very safe city. It's definitely recommended to take taxi's late at night, but that comes with any city in the world. I felt extremely safe, more safe than at my college university walking around at night.

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

Without a doubt I would choose Sol Education Abroad because it's very affordable, they have incredible directors, they are organized and super responsive and helpful, and take some of the best excursions. Choose Sol!

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)

It was very easy to live on a student's budget, especially in Granada, Spain. This is a nice clean city but also cheap when it comes to food, beverages and groceries. I was surprised when I didn't spend $100 a week, that is a lot. If you budget well while studying abroad you can easily spend a lot less than the estimated weekly/monthly budget costs.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Each week, depending on excursions, I spent about $10. Granada, Spain is a cheap city and it's easy to do fun things for free or very cheap.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Budget week by week. Know what excursions or activities you want to do at the beginning of the program, write them down, schedule them, and set aside that amount of money.

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

Along with Spanish classes, my host family only spoke Spanish and our directors encouraged us to speak in Spanish with them.

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
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? 400 level class
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Push through the barrier even if you're getting frustrated. Take a deep breath and speak as much Spanish as you can while you can. You won't regret it.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • 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?
  • The friendships I made with students in the program and with my host family.
  • Speaking Spanish everyday.
  • Traveling the country and Europe.
* What could be improved?
  • More intercambios within the program.
  • Volunteer activities.
  • More program hangouts outside of excursion.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew how much I was going to love it. I wish I knew that the paperwork and stress would all be worth it.

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.'