A rough start, but by the end I greatly appreciated it Past Review

By (Film Studies, Wellesley College) - abroad from 03/03/2014 to 06/27/2014 with

University of Sydney: Sydney - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I greatly appreciated the culture here in Australia, and think it was worthwhile; however, the rigorous school schedule made it very difficult to be able to travel and experience the whole country.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

A very small group handling the exchange students, making communication very slow and inconvenient. The registration process for the exchange students was ridiculous. While there were 3 weeks to allow for changing classes once the semester began, it required emailing one's advisor then waiting for their response, which usually took several days to a week. It became very difficult to make sure one was registered for the desired class.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Lived off campus due to on campus housing being incredibly expensive, and full by the time of application. Australian students filled the less expensive options before I was able to apply. Lived close to campus due to high public transport fares for international students, but the house was in very poor conditions.

* Food:

NA - No food options

* 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


* 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 city itself is very expensive, and thus living off campus made me responsible for my own food and additional costs. The housing on campus was so expensive that living there was out of the question, and even so, I still would have had to by my own food.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? about $150


* 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

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • 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? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • the big university feel compared to my small home college
* What could be improved?
  • More on campus lower cost housing options
  • quicker and easier registration process for exchange students
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew the amount of work and little time that would be available due to the school's schedule. There was only 1 day off outside of the vacation week, which meant I wasn't able to travel and experience the whole country like I was hoping too. Also, I wish I had known that the Australian students don't actually live on campus as they typically commute, thus I never really had the opportunity to bond with those I met in class. Also, I wish I had known how expensive the city was.

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 Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'