SFS Bhutan opened up my world and gave me hope! Past Review

By (Muhlenberg College) - abroad from 01/28/2019 to 05/08/2019 with

The School for Field Studies / SFS: Bhutan - Bhutan - Himalayan Studies

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
This experience has been life-changing, so I would certainly say it was worthwhile. I learned much about myself, in terms of self-reliance, self-compassion, and self-reflection. I learned about a new culture and way of life that is unlike anything I had experienced before. I learned how complex environmental problems are and how important it is to acknowledge the complexity, as well as the reality that humans are a PART of it and need to be involved, not separate.

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.

The courses were rigorous in that they challenged you to think and learn in new ways, to be more immersed in the learning and to work more collaboratively with group members. They were certainly manageable but the material is covered in a brisk manner so as to fit within the semester.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Our program was extremely well-organized and the on-site administration was very open to discussing any issues or needs from the students. They had our happiness and well-being always in mind.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

The food at our center was outstanding! We had so much variety and it was always fresh. Our chefs were incredible and very accommodating of specific food needs.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I wish we had more opportunities to interact with locals, through local volunteering and other activities, but over time we became more acquainted with the area.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Our Student Affairs Manager took care of our general health issues very well and was always ready to bring students to the hospital as needed.

* Safety:

Our host city was incredibly safe and we always felt comfortable walking around town.

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

The setting and subject of this program are both so interesting and spectacular; it combines environmental science with the influences of politics and religion and culture!


* 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)

The program was expensive up front, but it covered all of our food and boarding costs, so on the program we did not need to worry about those things.


* 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

We had a class on the language and culture of Bhutan but were not expected to use the language because the program was all conducted in English.

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

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Other
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • Immersive education
  • Trips to different parts of the country
  • All of the opportunities to explore and have fun
* What could be improved?
  • More down-time for reflection and rest
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That amidst the classes and heavily scheduled days, there would always be opportunities for time to bond with others and to have fun.

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.