Thailand: Infinite New Experiences Past Review

By (Business Administration, Birmingham-Southern College) for

The Education Abroad Network (TEAN): Thailand - Summer in Bangkok

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Yes! This was one of the most important things I chose to do during my undergraduate studies. Southeast Asia is an often overlooked area of the world, but it is one of the most interesting. Home to several emerging economies, some monarchies and democracies, and sandwiched between India and China, studying in any country in Southeast Asia is an opportunity of a lifetime. I'd highly recommend Singapore or Thailand (the two countries I visited while over there.

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.

Payap University provides a great educational experience for a Thai university. However, resources are limited (such as internet, library, and research). Furthermore, the professors at Payap vary greatly, and may be substantially less than what one would expect at an American institution.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

At best the administration at Payap is average. They made dramatic program changes without informing any of the students in the program, and they were not always available should problems arise.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Housing is not American standards. However, it is some of the best housing you'll find at Thai universities. All rooms in PIH have an air conditioner unit. The PIH staff is very helpful, and an English speaking Thai student is almost always manning the information desk during the day. You will need to be prepared to buy thing (including uniforms), but these items are very cheap in Thailand.

* Food:

On campus food was adequate. Off campus, there is amazing places to eat everywhere (just ask a Thai friend).

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Chiang Mai's night life is outstanding. You must see the Sunday walking market, go elephant riding, and take a Thai cooking class. Any field trips taken will be the responsibility of your professor (good professor's organize great trips off campus, the administration is not very helpful so an unorganized or new professor might have a disaster happen if he or she decides to take a trip).

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Payap has a great hospital located several miles from the campus. Access to the hospital doctors is covered by the university provided you follow their policy.

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)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
Language acquisition improvement?

It is not necessary to know Thai in Chiang Mai, although it helps a lot. The language course offered was taught by an amazing instructor, but the program was so poorly designed this class was useless.

If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • International Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Go with an open mind, a willingness to adapt, and be ready to be hot because it's the tropics.