A Life Changing Experience For Me March 21, 2018

By (SUNY - Stony Brook) - abroad from 09/01/2015 to 12/18/2015 with

Instituto Franklin-UAH: Alcalá de Henares - Study Abroad in Spain

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
My Spanish improved immensely. I went from being a Spanish major that could only read, write, and listen, and hardly speak, to someone that could actually hold a conversation by the end of the program. I made life-long friends and I still see some here in Spain. I´ve stayed two years after the program and am living now with two friends I made during study abroad while we do the Teach and Learn MA Program at Instituto Franklin.

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.

* 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

I had a great time in Alcala. I felt very at home, I felt close with the staff, I practiced my Spanish and learned a lot about myself and my capabilities during the program.

Finances

* 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? Food was included at home.

Language

* 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? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* 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?
  • The immersion
  • The staff
  • The independence
* What could be improved?
  • More extracurricular activities
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That Spain and the Instituto Franklin would end up being my home for years to come and to always be flexible and understanding of other cultural perspectives. Things may not always make sense at first, but when looking at the reasoning behind why something is happening puts things into perspective. I´ve grown immensely from this program.

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 Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!