Pembroke was an amazing experience! June 08, 2019

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 09/03/2018 to 06/21/2019 with

University of Cambridge, Pembroke College: Cambridge - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
While abroad I feel like I really got to know myself (cliche, I am aware), and I think that Cambridge's academic system is so individual that it really required me to leave my comfort zone and really get comfortable with the material and my thoughts on it. Because I joined a sports team, I got to see parts of the country I wouldn't have otherwise been to and I made an amazing group of friends who were undergrads as well as grad students. I would absolutely say it was worthwhile.

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 academic system is completely different, and it takes some getting used to. I wrote between 1500 and 2500 words per week per paper I was taking, and I did not really know that was what I was getting myself into before I arrived. After adjusting, it was fine and I think that my writing speed has greatly improved.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The house that almost all of the abroad students were put in was pretty far away from the college (5 mins by bike/15 min walk) and really far away from almost everything else in cambridge, such as night life, the sports center, and any real (not express) grocery stores.

* Food:

The regular food in the hall was ok, but sometimes it was hard to find things I wanted to eat and often they would have the same things. The food at formal dinners, however, was really good.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I am really glad I joined the ice hockey team when I arrived, because I made an amazing group of friends from it. I would suggest that future students try to join a sport or a society and really stick with it in order to find friends. I also found friends at my college, but the easiest way is to join things.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

The NHS is amazing! I did not have to pay for any of the healthcare I received and it was all on par if not better than what I have received in the US.

* Safety:

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

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)

The thing about this program that I didn't realize going in was that I was going to have to pay for all of my meals, and the costs added up really quick.

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

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

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

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
* 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? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Writing a dissertation
  • The friends I made
  • The city itself
* What could be improved?
  • Housing location
  • Wellesley should give students money for food since they charge tuition as if we are on a meal plan
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had known about food costs, and I wish I had known that I could have possibly switched out of my first term class which was my last choice and which I did not enjoy at all.

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!