Best Decision of my Undergraduate Career Past Review

By (Russian, Eastern European, & Eurasian Studies, The University of Texas at Austin) - abroad from 01/07/2013 to 07/31/2013 with

University of Tampere: Tampere - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about myself, the world, and life in general. Getting OUTSIDE and AWAY from the US is the best thing anyone can do, if only for a little while. Other countries are SO MUCH MORE put together than ours is... People are kind, wonderful, and polite abroad. It was an amazing refresher on cultural differences.

Review Photos

Exchange: Tampere - University of Tampere Photo Exchange: Tampere - University of Tampere Photo Exchange: Tampere - University of Tampere Photo Exchange: Tampere - University of Tampere Photo Exchange: Tampere - University of Tampere Photo

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

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The student housing is provided by a private company known as TOAS. They were very immovable, unfriendly, and terrible all around. The rooms were ridiculously priced for the value received. The ONLY good thing about living with TOAS is that you live in an international community. I made so many friends from around the world.

* Food:

Food here is excellent! And you'll lose weight even if you stuff your face.... Scandinavian food standards are awesome!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Healthcare is easy, excellent, and inexpensive. I had issues with the new Insurance program UT is using; however, discussion with the insurance coordinator back at UT fixed everything for me.

* Safety:

You have almost nothing to worry about here. Exceptionally safe.

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)

Finland is ridiculously expensive on some things, and ridiculously cheap on others. The issue is that food is very expensive here. I had to take out much more money in loans than previously budgeted for... and I ate very light. Housing is also very expensive.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 300/350
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Try your best to not room with TOAS. Food is expensive, so budget accordingly... but you can travel around Europe for very very inexpensive. Utilize other services rather than wasting money on impulses. Buy a Skype Premium subscription to the US for one year, and a Finnish phone number (which uses Skype). Total of 80$ and I needed nothing else.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
  • Apartment
  • 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
  • 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?
  • Culture
  • People
  • Travel
* What could be improved?
  • Financial Hardships
  • Housing Options
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish that I had been more aware of the financial hardships that accompany this program. I've had to pay my own way through school, and I had to double the amount of loans I had taken out for the first three years for this one semester.

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 Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.