An Aix-citing Experience January 17, 2022

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 08/21/2021 to 12/18/2021 with

Wellesley College: Aix-en-Provence - Wellesley-in-Aix

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

I think overall the administration was really supportive and perhaps this was because of covid but there felt like some things fell through the cracks and there wasn't a lot of grace when I unknowingly didn't comply with one of the academic policies.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I am glad that I got to live with a host family but would have benefitted from more support facilitating integration in the family and dealing with conflict/misunderstandings (language barrier)

* 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 feel like medical care was accessible but there was a real lack of support regarding mental health services. I had to pay for my own therapy sessions through wire transfer which I was unfamiliar with.

* Safety:

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

I learned a lot, improved my french and became a lot more independent which I am really grateful for. I wish I had some more mental health support esp. as someone who deals with anxiety and depression and


* 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)

WIA provides a generous stipend that covers all of the necessities while also allowing students to profit from the city (museums, concerts, etc.)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $80-100
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Check if events have student discounts/bring your student i.d. keep a list of cheapest places to eat in the area


* 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

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? 300 french
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? going to language cafes/exchanges watch tv + youtube in target language take breaks but stay in target language as much as possible don't let people speak to you in English

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
  • 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?
  • Language Improvement
  • Excursions
  • Classes
* What could be improved?
  • mental health services
  • info about living with a host familly
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? as a person of color, I think there could be a greater focus on how some of the cultural differences are rooted in things like universalism/post-racialism and how they talk about the difference is really difficult to adjust to

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!