Semester study at Edinburgh College of Art Past Review

By (BFA Sculpture, SUNY Purchase) for

SUNY Purchase: Edinburgh - Edinburgh College of Art

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I see my own culture very differently. I have such a fascination with the rest of the world that I had never really tapped into before. Being in an english speaking country was beneficial for making work in a short period of time, however, going to Barcelona while I was there was amazing.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month
The term and year this program took place: Spring 2009

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The difference between Purchase's program and ECA's is night and day. ECA's 3rd year students have very little structure to their program, with no required courses and only a few actual deadlines throughout the semester. While this was extremely beneficial in the fact that it allowed me for the first time in my college career to take a step back and really think about what I'm making, and why, I definitely have reservations about how little interaction you are alotted with tutors(professors). I had only 2 sit down conversations throughout the semester with 2 different tutors, in addition to 2 crit's. The program had really great facilities, very comparable physically to Purchases, though they have a full time staff/shop tecnition there 9-5 in order to aid students(which was extremely convenient in getting help and feedback on projects considering the tutors were rarely around). Overall, the student body was fairly professional and focused despite tangible frustrations with how disorganized their program was.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

very little to no interaction with administration. however I think it was a beneficial break from how demanding the program at Purchase is.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

ECA offers no student housing, however I was offered a couple websites to take a look at, and found a room to sublet shortly after. I ended up finding a room on the local university property, called college wyde, I didn't realize untill just before getting there that it wasn't a regular apartment. It turned out great though because I was in a community of young people, and where the ECA program was much more independent, my living arrangement really made being social so much easier. I ended up making great friends from the university from living with them.

* Food:

I had my own kitchen to I made my own food most of the time, but in general, the UK has heavy beige food as a standord. Edinburgh is a city though, so any kind of food imaginable you can find somewhere, expensive to eat out, but definitely worth it once in a while. Cockburn st has the best mexican, also great Tapa's and turkish Tapa's restuarants within the city.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Such an important experience to be able to view your own culture from an outside perspective, living amongst English, Scottish and my Russian Friend was an amazing experience. I now need to live abroad at some point after college for at least a year.

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)


Language acquisition improvement?


Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? DO IT, do everything you can, meet as many people, be outgoing, except the fact that you will be judged for being american, and let it go as soon as possible. Be humble.