Ate my way through Edinburgh but didn’t make any friends January 18, 2020

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 09/08/2019 to 12/20/2019 with

University of Edinburgh: Edinburgh - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot of cooking and did some amazing travelling through Scotland. Definitely worthwhile.

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.

Easier than my home institution but without the resources that I now know are important to me. Almost none of my professors had office hours and do not care to know your name. Maybe because it’s a large university? The lecturers knew their stuff but in my team taught immunology course (team of seven) few seemed to know what content the others were covering.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Fantastic location in the old town, but I lived in a wing of a hostel that the university rented out, which I don’t recommend. The hostel was poorly managed and it would have been easier if the university was in charge. I did have an amazing single room with en suite bathroom.

* Food:

Self catered

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

You won’t feel integrated in the social culture if you don’t join a society. I didn’t join and I regret it because I didn’t really make any friends there. I did feel welcome in pubs etc though as a foreigner.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Healthcare is free as long as you register with a GP when you arrive. The university GPs and many others nearby filled up before I got to register so I never did registered at all. When I got really sick at the end of the semester I couldn’t see a doctor so definitely register.

* Safety:

You can walk around old town Edinburgh at night safely. There’s lots of night life and people about.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? No

I would have chosen a program for more guidance than direct enrollment offers.


* 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)

Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Cook for yourself and pack lunch instead of eating out. Save your money to go out to dinner because Edinburgh has lots of great restaurants.


* 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
  • Hostel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Independence
* What could be improved?
  • Relationship with lecturers
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? You need to put effort in to make local friends. They won’t come to you.

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!