No-Rules Panama Past Review

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 08/28/2017 to 12/06/2017 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?
I learned about a different culture, a new language, how to surf... Of course it was worthwhile!

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

All the staff are wonderful, loving people and were so important to my experience! But the way the program is run is frustrating and I think purposely isolates us from local culture, defeating the purpose of studying abroad.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

There was mold in my room. I was sick for a month.

* 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? No

I loved the cultural and environmental experience I got from this program, but I only felt like I was growing and learning in one of my four classes and I did not enjoy the way the program itself is set up- it more like a summer camp than a semester of college.


* 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? $20 a week, sometimes more for special experiences like a surf lesson or to buy a dress


* 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? Get out and meet people! I also used the duolingo app everyday for practice

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?
  • local friends I made
  • the local habitat
  • the directed research component
* What could be improved?
  • accomodations
  • more independence for students
  • more free time
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? spanish!

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.