Darling it's better down where it's wetter, take it from me! Past Review

By (Environmental Science., Brandeis University) - abroad from 09/01/2013 to 12/05/2013 with

The School for Field Studies / SFS: Turks and Caicos Islands - Marine Resource Studies

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
How to talk to people about difficult topics. Working with the locals and helping change their perspective on sustainability.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $30 a week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? You might not get another chance to buy a unique cultural item. If you like it go for it.


* 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

I had the unique opportunity to practice my Haitian Creole very regularly. No one else on my program spoke Creole, staff included, so I become the designated translator. It helped me become fluent when I didn't even expect to practice.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? French 160+
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? Even if you're nervous, practice speaking to locals anyway. They are always happy that you're trying to talk to them in their native language.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
  • Other
  • Hotel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
* 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?
  • SCUBA diving
  • Tagging sharks and turtles
  • Traveling to the different islands
* What could be improved?
  • Improved sanitation
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How much intense biology was required.

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 Networker
An active student leader, it was important for you to network abroad as well. Once overseas, you sought out student clubs, volunteered with local organizations, or attended community events. You encouraged your friends join you, and often considered how you could reflect your international experiences in a resume.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Marine Ecology

Course Department: Biology
Instructor: Aaron Henderson
Instruction Language: English
Comments: The exams were extremely difficult. Not only did the professor talk fast but anything he ever mentioned, material that wasn't included in the course notes or on the slides was fair game on exams. The class was good because we were able to go SCUBA diving looking at coral bleaching.
Credit Transfer Issues: