Wish I Could Do Again! May 31, 2020

By (Villanova University) - abroad from 06/26/2020 to 11/10/2019 with

The Education Abroad Network (TEAN): Dunedin - University of Otago

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained greater perspectives about the world and about other people. Seeing more of the world is an invaluable experience that no movie, image, or story can replace, which is why my experience was so worthwhile. I made friendships that will last a lifetime and wish I could go back already.

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.

Enjoyed my classes very much and the university had plenty of available resources to use!

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

A few non-ideal situations happened at the university while we were there, and TEAN was so quick to act, checking in with us and making sure we were all safe and healthy. Not only were they prompt with their actions, but they continued to check in on us all throughout the semester. It was very much appreciated.

* Safety:

Living in a city can be quite daunting. However, I felt very safe in Dunedin and was careful not to put myself in dangerous circumstances. We used the buddy system and always checked in on each other if we were walking at night. While we did this, I was never in a situation where my safety was at risk.

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

I am so thankful for TEAN! First of all, our 4 day orientation excursion in Queenstown was amazing and unlike other programs. We were able to get to know other students in the program as well as learn more about the culture and country. The orientation staff constantly checked up on us throughout the semester and planned some great excursions for us.

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Around $100 a week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? I was inclined to spend more money at the beginning and end of my program, so knowing this I tried to watch this and not spend too much all at once.

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Other
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • 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?
  • Friendliness of staff
  • Orientation
  • Friendships made
* What could be improved?
  • Program excursions
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew that I could lean on the TEAN staff more if I needed to. I expected the staff to simply do their jobs and not much more, but I was so far off. The TEAN staff, especially the two that lived in my host city, were SO helpful and caring. They would reach out to us and check in periodically, they gave us advice and information, and they treated us with kindness and compassion. It took me a bit of time getting to know them to realize they were such great people.

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 Avid Adventurer
The wardrobe you packed was better suited for a semester of camping than club hopping. Outdoorsy, you might forgo a crazy night out for an early all-day adventure. You'd rather take in the rich culture of an old town than the metropolis of a modern city, but for you getting off the grid is ideal.