When Can I Go Back? February 05, 2018

By (Carnegie Mellon University) - abroad from 08/17/2017 to 12/22/2017 with

The Education Abroad Network (TEAN): Seoul - Korea University

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned to travel by myself, and how rewarding that experience is. Many people thought I was lonely, but I got to appreciate everything at my own pace, without having to worry about whether others are bored, or hungry, or tired. In focusing on myself, I also learned about my abilities and limits. Overall I grew as a person, becoming more extroverted, to the extent that I can be independent. It was definitely worthwhile. Being around people all the time is just as rewarding because you make lifelong friendships. It depends on who you are but you just have to keep an open mind, and accept all challenges that appear.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Maybe it was because of my home university, but I the intensity was less than what I am used to, but I appreciated it so I could have more opportunity to explore the country.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The hill up to CJ International House was a blessing and a curse. I actually came to like it a lot, especially after I found that I lost weight, but it was definitely a battle in the heat every day.

* Food:

I love the food in Korea. It's delicious, cheap, and did I mention delicious?

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

People were so willing to help, and took the time to communicate with you. They also helped guide you in how to interact with others.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I had no health issues while abroad.

* Safety:

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

TEAN helped work through the paper work of student visas and registrations, so you could focus on preparing yourself for the adventure of a lifetime. It also included many cultural events to teach participants more about the host country.

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)

Food is so cheap, so if you were regularly spending more than $15 a day on food, you weren't finding the right places to eat.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $100
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Find the cheap food. It's everywhere. Every once in a while going out is nice, but there's no need to splurge on food every day.

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

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Korean 1
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? If you can read Hangul, it will make it so much better for you.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students
* 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?
  • cultural events
  • resident staff
  • communication
* What could be improved?
  • more regular schedule for cultural events
  • more language preparation
  • clearer explanation for registration procedure
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? TEAN did tell us that registration is hectic at KU but it was beyond what I imagined. I think it might help to tell us to expect not to get into any classes at registration, but that there is a fairly high chance we will get them after classes start.

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.