Friends, mountains, adventures all around. Past Review

By (Geography, Middlebury College) - abroad from 07/01/2014 to 11/08/2014 with

University of Otago: Dunedin - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I had a fabulous time learning to navigate around New Zealand, fully embracing my outdoorsy side, making new friends, gaining confidence travelling alone.

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.

It all depended on the course. Geology was hard, Pacific Studies was easy.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The international office at Otago was extremely helpful throughout the semester.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I greatly enjoyed the Uniflats system. I got to meet some wonderful Kiwis and other international students. It was great to not have to worry about housing at all. Uniflats takes care of it all!

* Food:

I cooked for myself. Food in NZ is very expensive.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I made some wonderful Kiwi friends living as I did, well integrated in the Uni community.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Slow service in the health center, and then, while very sick, had to walk through the cold rain downtown to turn in my information to the lab.

* Safety:

NZ is a remarkable safe place to live and visit. I rarely felt uneasy traveling on my own.

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)

New Zealand is a very expensive country.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Between $70 and $150 depending on the activities for the week...
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Always share petrol on road trips.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* 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
  • Americans
  • International Students
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 people I met.
  • The beautiful mountains.
  • The bright blue lakes.
* What could be improved?
  • Uniflats shouldn't take over all of the flats in a certain area so others like me can still live right next to wonderful Kiwi flats.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Three winters in a row gets mighty cold.

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.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:


Course Department: Geology
Instruction Language: English
Comments: GEOL112 was a challenging but overall good course to take while in New Zealand. We definitely made good use of the surrounding landscape during class field trips and in-class examples. The large number of course instructors sometimes made the lectures feel rather choppy.
Credit Transfer Issues: