A Dream Come True Past Review

By (Stephen F. Austin State University) - abroad from 06/02/2012 to 06/30/2012 with

Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA): Dijon and Paris - French Language and Culture Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained a greater understanding and appreciation of the language and culture. It was definitely worthwhile.

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: Ecole Suisse Dijon Ecole Suisse Paris
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 were well planned and adapted easily to each student's individual level of French. The program definitely emphasized gaining a greater cultural understanding of France.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Syliv, in Dijon, was great! Jean, in Paris, was pretty awesome too.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Both of my host mothers were very accomodating and open to sharing their culture with me.

* Food:

I've never ate so much and so well and not gain any weight!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I heard good things from the person who had to see a doctor. The pharmacies were very helpful with medications as well.

* Safety:

Pretty safe overall. However, i did feel uneasy when the metro was crowded and everyone was shoulder to shoulder. I just didn't keep anything in my pockets.

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)

* 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? Avg 150 Euro
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Don't forget the exchange rate while budgeting. Try to find a bank that has partner branches abroad so you don't lose money on ridiculous fees. Easier to use ATMs than tot bring US dollars to exchange.


* 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

All the time!

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Advanced
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Upper (400) level
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? Don't get caught up speaking in English. Force yourself to speak in French as often as possible!

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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Living with locals
  • The professors
  • experiencing the language and culture firsthand
* What could be improved?
  • nothing really
  • maybe a few more trips, but I did enjoy the free time we had.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I feel I was well prepared by our professor and study abroad coordinator