A year of studying and working in Brussels, Belgium Past Review

By (International Economics And Finance, Austin College) - abroad from 08/20/2012 to 05/17/2013 with

Vesalius College: Brussels - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I feel a lot more able and confident after my experience abroad. Tasks that were once challenging for me are now easy.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Classes were not as rigorous as my home university.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Program directors were readily available- the program as a whole was disappointing but the directors were always there to help and gave the students a lot of support.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I lived with a host family and was very happy with the living arrangement. My room was plenty big and I felt comfortable at home.

* Food:

The host family I lived with cooked fabulous meals.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I was able to get integrated through living with a host family but other than that, ISA did not help us meet local students. It would have been great if they could have matched us up with local students to practice our conversation skills.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Did not have any health issues but ISA did not go over healthcare options thoroughly.

* 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 host family I lived with provided me with the majority of my meals. However the price of food was extremely expensive in Brussels.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $75


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

Living with a host family was the best practice for my language skills. I wish the program had matched us up with local students looking to learn English.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? An advanced language course
How many hours per day did you use the language?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • 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?
  • Host family option
  • Internship option
* What could be improved?
  • Language exposure
  • Vesalius University
  • More French classes
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish that I was more confident in my language skills before going into the program. If I was able to do it all again, I would have probably taken all my classes in French and chosen a different program.

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!