TAKE ME BACK! Past Review

By (Kean University) - abroad from 09/07/2014 to 12/22/2014 with

The Education Abroad Network ( TEAN ): Shanghai - Fudan University

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about chinese culture and other cultures I interacted with during my time abroad. I felt myself grow as a person from the start of the program and now.

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.

A majority of my courses were business focused with one beginner Chinese class. The classes were mediocre in terms of difficulty, except for one. My hardest class was my Foreign Business Investment class but I learned the most from that class. Test are not as hard as it seems. Attend the test reviews beforehand and you will be okay. If you happen to take Foreign Business Investment, take notes on everything that is said because some of the questions are based on what was said during the lecture.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The best! I keep wondering how TEAN found their staff cause they are great at what they do. If you ever need anything, you will get a response in less than twenty-four hours. Very attentive and responsive.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My apartment was great. Not far from campus at all. It's gated so you will feel extra safe. There are guards there 24/7. If you happen to leave your key inside your apartment (My mistake) you can ask them to open it for you but make sure to have cash on hand.

* Food:

YOU CAN'T GO HUNGRY! Seriously! There is street food on every corner in Shanghai. Super cheap too! Shanghai has local and international food so if you feel like getting a taste of home, grab some Mickey D's. ( They deliver!)

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Friendly. A majority of the locals I met were super nice and interested in getting to know me as a person. If you go to the popular touristy areas, everyone will want to take pictures with you and some people will try to sneak a picture of you but it's nothing to be concerned about.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I didn't have any particular health issues but my friends from TEAN who did received quick and reliable care. The resident director and if needed, the TEAN staff in the U.S. will assist you with any health concerns you need. Even though I didn't personally experience going to a hospital,(Hopefully you won't either!) communicating won't be an issue because they have english speaking staff members.

* Safety:

Shanghai is very safe. Before coming to Shanghai, I was told it's safe for a lady to walk alone at night. I didn't believe it until it happened.

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

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)

I found it easy to live on a student's budget during my time abroad. When it comes to food, Eat local chinese food because it is much cheaper and tastes very good. Buying groceries and cooking at home makes it even cheaper and often leaves money for other things. Shopping can be done on a budget. Clothes can be found for cheap at Tiangtong Road (My favorite) and throughout many of the fake markets. That goes for electronics,etc. DO NOT be afraid to bargain. That's the only way you will get those low prices! If you're into nightlife, I suggest going out in a group and splitting the cost for taxi fare. There aren't any cover fees and drinks come with a table which are usually free. So going out can be pretty cheap too. Museums and art galleries are low cost for students so bring your Fudan I.D. If you're traveling solo, take the metro more than taxis but taxis in general are cheap.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Food- 50 RMB/Week (I cooked my own meals and ate a lot of street food).
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Eat local food and street food. Cheaper and delicious. Cook at home. If you can't cook, look for recipes online. Nightlife: Go out in a group and split cab fare.Get contact with promoters (Free table and drinks)

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? None
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? None
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? Speak with locals! Try to speak in mandarin when your asking for directions, help, etc. Download an app that will help you if you get stuck. Make local chinese friends and practice!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Other
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • Help whenever I needed (Staff)
* What could be improved?
  • More utensils in kitchen
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How much fun I would have! Before leaving, I was often asked, "Why China?" Now everyone who asked wants to go!

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 Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.