Best four months of my life Past Review

By (University of Iowa) - abroad from 01/01/2013 to 04/26/2013 with

The Education Abroad Network (TEAN): Gold Coast - Bond University

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained a better understand of myself, which was the most important aspect of the entire experience. I learned that no matter how much money it costs and no matter how far away I am from home, it is all worth it because of the lifelong friends I made and all the things I learned about life and myself.

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.

TEAN has a great connection with Bond University, which helped make me feel comfortable attending classes there as well as making the transition easy for foreigners. My education experience was what I wanted in the classroom, but studying abroad in a different culture was the best education experience I've ever had.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Everything went well while studying abroad in the Gold Coast. I never had any serious problems and enjoyed everything about the host country program administration.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My housing arrangements were the best they could have been. I remember meeting people from different programs and I always had the best housing out of anyone. I loved the serviced apartments and most of all loved being right by the beach!

* Food:

During Orientation, Fiji, and TEAN events, the program fed us well and I liked how they never put the pressure on us to find something to eat.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt very integrated with the Australian culture mostly because of where I lived. I was constantly around locals, which made the studying abroad experience that much better. I also felt very integrated while on campus with the local students.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I got sick a couple times and each time I went to the pharmacy they were extremely helpful. I told them what was wrong and why I was in pain and they gave me exactly what I needed to get better and the medicines they suggested helped every time.

* Safety:

One of the greatest things about the Gold Coast is how safe you do feel. there are no sketchy areas and people are everywhere and good chances are someone will be around if you need help. I always felt safe where I lived as well. Not once did I feel uncomfortable living halfway across the world.

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)

I handled living on a students budget pretty well. Money was a big issue for me, but I managed and didn't let it stop me from living the best four months of my life.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I think I spent about $5,000
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? The number one thing I would tell students is to spend your money on experiences. You only study abroad once and you should try to do as much as you can, so save up during the times your just hanging out and budget yourself on groceries and material things until the end.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Hotel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • Orientation
  • Fiji
  • Culture Events and housing
* What could be improved?
  • Cheaper
  • More litter excursions
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew how comfortable I would feel with the program because then I wouldn't have worried all those times before the experience started!

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.