an opportunity to rest March 12, 2018

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 08/19/2017 to 12/21/2018 with

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam: Amsterdam - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I was able to have time away from wellesley to rest and not work as hard.

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.

Very brief set of courses to choose from. Classes were entirely based on exam grades. Grading was very tough, but I found my classes to be very easy.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

My housing situation was horrible, and the university administration were very difficult to get help from.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Horrible. Very far from University.

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I received not assistance during an extended period of sickness.

* Safety:

very safe

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

Bad course selection. Poor community. Bad administration. Expensive city which is entirely geared towards tourism.


* 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? Find cheap housing, because the food is very expensive. The housing is bad at all of the locations, but mine was the most expensive and by far the worst living arrangement.


* 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

  • Hotel
* 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? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • easy
  • independent
  • different learning community
* What could be improved?
  • housing
  • location
  • class selection
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Amsterdam is a great place to visit, but not a great place to live. The weather is very bad, and it gets bad by september. I didn't think there were enough courses to select from, and the options were very basic. Healthcare was a nightmare, and you need to have a large amount of money on hand, because they make you first pay out of pocket and then submit claims if you are on a dutch international health plan. No one takes american cards, so opening a dutch bank account is a must.

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.'