The Experiment in International Living: Tanzania Past Review

By (Gorham High School) - abroad from 06/28/2016 to 08/04/2016 with

The Experiment in International Living - Extraordinary High School Summer Abroad Programs

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
This past summer I went on a five week trip to Tanzania with eleven other students I had never met before and it was an invaluable experience. This trip was focused on language and cultural discovery so we would have daily Swahili lessons and were always learning about the new areas we traveled to. As a group we really clicked right away, none of us knew each other before but when you are with new people in a new place it is very easy to relate and connect. Our two group leaders also really helped with bonding and debriefing after days filled with excitement, we would talk about questions we might have about this new place, or funny stories that happened from the day. Our group was filled of many different personalities but we were able to connect and relate. One of my favorite parts of the trip was the homestay, we got to stay in a small coastal village with a family, we ate meals together and would spend whole days without seeing the other group members. At first this was scary, having to be with a family that didn’t know English very well and I didn’t know their language very well wither but it ended up being the best and most memorable experience. We saw elephants, beautiful mountains, artwork, performances, this trip was just filled with so many learning experiences and amazing things. The Experiment really focuses on being students and not tourists and I really enjoyed that aspect, we weren’t standing on the sidelines observing, we were relating, getting involved, and asking questions about the real culture.

Review Photos

The Experiment in International Living - Extraordinary High School Summer Abroad Programs Photo

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.

We were always learning about new peoples, places, and things.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

In our country we worked with one travel group and they were a small very awesome family based group that were always welcoming and helpful.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

We were staying in families homes, tents, and hostels, they all had the necessities.

* Food:

We were always fed very well by host families and restaurants, we never went hungry.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

There was never a point on this trip where I was not learning about the new culture I was in.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

When needed medical care was provided for an intense situation, but for a majority of the trip we just had a first aid kit.

* Safety:

Our group was

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

I did not know what I was getting myself into when I applied to the program but it ended up being so great with many twists and turns that were wonderful and I learned from.


* 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
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
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? Really try to interact with people that actually speak the language, surround yourself with the new language.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
  • Hotel
  • Hostel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
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 people
  • Our daily adventures
  • The communities
* What could be improved?
  • Communication with back home
  • The packing list
  • Nothing else
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had known that it would not be just easy and fun, I wish I had thought about the tough physical, emotional things that I would come across. But because I had to figure out how to deal with these things I became much stronger.