An Amazing Experience with an Amazing Program Past Review

By (University of Massachusetts Amherst) - abroad from 07/16/2012 to 11/23/2012 with

The Education Abroad Network (TEAN): Sydney - University of Sydney

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained lifelong friends and memories that I will never forget. I learned about learning in a different way. I learned how to budget my money (Ive never been very good at that). Ive become more outgoing and speak my mind more than I did before.

Review Photos

The Education Abroad Network: Sydney - University of Sydney Photo The Education Abroad Network: Sydney - University of Sydney Photo The Education Abroad Network: Sydney - University of Sydney Photo The Education Abroad Network: Sydney - University of Sydney Photo The Education Abroad Network: Sydney - University of Sydney Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

At The University of Sydney, they really work to help the international students feel comfortable and at home. They have a "buddy" program where they give your email to a student that had also participated in a study abroad program. My 'buddy' took me around campus and showed me how to use the library, good places to study, the hangouts on campus to let off steam in between campus, and where to get good food. He was always available to answer my questions. The classes themselves were very difficult, but as long as you kept up with the work and went to class you were fine.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

When we first arrived, they met the group flight at the airport and took us to where we would be staying for the orientation week. The orientation week was very helpful. We were shown around Sydney and learned the basics of transportation. Even after we were moved in, we had constant contact with Christian, our program adviser in the area. He was always around to help us if we had any questions or needed help.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I lived in the Meriton Serviced Apartments in Bondi Junction. The apartments were amazing and I was put in a room with the best group of girls I could have asked for. Most students in the program lived with us in other apartments, while others lived in home-stays or in another apartment building on Coogee Beach

* Food:

There was no meal plan offered with the program. We were responsible for buying our own groceries, but it was relatively easy to do as there was a grocery store right up the street

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Very much so. Christian, our adviser, was constantly setting up cultural events for us. We attended an original play in the Sydney Opera House as well as an AFL game. He set up surf lessons and was constantly having 'coffee breaks' at the local cafes. I made friends with a few Aussies in my class and they took me around and showed me what they do for fun.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

The program was very good about having us sign up for the Over Seas Health Care, which was free. It was very easy, and offered us good health care in the country.

* Safety:

I felt very safe in the city. I know some locals said that certain areas, such as Kings Cross, where a bit rough, but as long as you were smart and careful and went around with a group, it was fine.

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)

Sydney is definitely a more expensive city. I was comfortable with about 200 a week on food and personal expenses, but there were occasions where I would have to spend a bit more. Some of my friends got jobs and I would highly suggest it to any student looking to study abroad

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? About $200-$250
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Get a job and really budget yourself. It is possible to spend under $40 on groceries per week if you are smart about shopping. There are great deals every week at the grocery stores (Coles and Woolworths), you need only look.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
  • Hostel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • 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?
  • The Administration/Advisers
  • Housing/Roommates
* What could be improved?
  • Offer some sort of meal plan, if possible
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had gotten a job. Money was an issue at times during the semester and a job would have definitely helped