IES Abroad

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About

IES Abroad offers 140 programs worldwide for college students. We are a highly charged force of study abroad enthusiasts. Every day we have the privilege of witnessing how study abroad changes our students’ lives. We also believe that every student should have the opportunity to go abroad—especially in a fun, safe, and superior academic and cultural environment.

From our headquarters in Chicago to our 35 locations and the staff on-site, we all work toward the common goal of providing mind-bending, life-changing, opinion-altering study abroad opportunities.

We’re not ashamed to admit we’re a little bit obsessed with study abroad.

Reviews

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Anna
10/10

I stepped off the plane at Heathrow almost 5 years ago excited, terrified, and armed with about a million questions and concerns, and every step of the way, the IES staff were absolutely incredible. Living, studying, and interning in London has made such a lasting impact on me, and I return to the city every chance I get (and I’m certain everyone I know is sick of me talking about it). The experience even inspired me to get a working holiday visa to Ireland after graduation, during which time I popped back into the IES London office unannounced with my best friend (who I met during my semester abroad) and was floored when the staff still remembered who we were, including our names and our university. The IES staff really care about you having the best experience and seeing as much of the city as you can. Nothing can quite compare to reading a novel set in London and then literally walking in the characters’ footsteps with your class! IES also offers so many great trips outside of London that are included in the program, make sure you go on all of them! If you are uncertain about making the leap and going to London through IES, you should absolutely go for it (but only if you want lifelong friends, to grow academically, culturally, and personally, and have stories to tell that will make your coworkers cry laughing).

How can this program be improved?
More opportunities to interact with British students
Some academic courses were not clearly structured
Yes, I recommend
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Lindsey
10/10

Studying abroad through IES Abroad Granada was the best decision I could've made. From the amazing program staff, to my beloved host mom, and the city Granada itself, I felt supported, challenged, and excited on a daily basis. I had the opportunity to take fun and engaging classes- a Spanish class, flamenco dancing, a literature course, a feminist film course, and a class on Islamic architecture (you get to have class in the Alhambra!!). The program offers support in helping students engage in the community. Through IES, I was able to take an extracurricular painting class at a local community art center. Every week, an email of all the amazing events and activities going on goes out- language meet ups, cool tapas bars to check out, museum exhibits... anything under the sun! IES takes students on incredible excursions- one of my favorites was our trip to Morocco, where we had the opportunity to stay in homestay families in Rabat and explore a bunch of different cities. I cannot say enough good things about the staff- Javier is absolutely the best person on the planet for this job, and I loved getting to know the folks at IES Granada. They strike an excellent balance of making students feel comfortable and supported while giving students independence and opportunity to shape their own experiences.

Granada itself is truly a magical city, with beautiful mountains, tons of nooks and crannies to explore, an abundance of tapas, and wonderful people. I loved sitting in a plaza with a café con leche after class, soaking up the Spanish sun and reading a book or talking with a friend. It's very walkable, very beautiful, and the ideal size for studying abroad- big enough where I felt like I had plenty to explore, but small enough to get to know well. There is also access to nature right outside of the city. I would hike often in the nearby rolling hills, or take a short bus ride to the beautiful Alpujarra, where you can explore the Sierra Nevada and take a breather from the city.

One of the biggest highlights for me was my host mom- she was undoubtedly my best friend while I was abroad, and I learned so much from living with her. She made me feel like family right off the bat, and hanging out with her skyrocketed my Spanish speaking abilities. We went shopping together, went for churros and chocolate, and spent many hours having long chats about life! Living with her was so special, and an experience I will hold in my heart forever.

I also had a really special experience with my intercambio, a local student from the University of Granada. She became one of my close friends, and we would meet for coffee or tapas every couple of weeks. I loved hanging out with the orientadores, local students who lead fun excursions for IES students and also help with orientation at the beginning of the semester. I did a bunch of cool activities with them- went to art exhibits, to cafés, on a hike in a nearby town. I established a strong relationship with one of them, and was invited to her house for lunch at the end of the semester! (a big deal in Spanish culture!)

IES Abroad Granda is an amazing program! I truly loved it and I would recommend it to anyone looking for an immersive experience full of challenge, fun, and adventure!

Yes, I recommend
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Sabrina
10/10

I got to study with a master violinist, perform a lot, see major ensembles like the Vienna Phil and Vienna State Opera for free or for very cheap, take classes that I could use for my major, and meet a lot of locals, one of them being a lifelong friend that I'll never forget. I also learned so much more German in just one semester than I thought I would, seeing as I didn't know any when I got to Vienna. I lived in an apartment that was about 20 minutes away from the city center, which I thought was really nice--close enough and far away from all the tourists. I also took advantage of a lot of the IES Abroad opportunities like Student Council and Student Forum, which I found rewarding. There really is nothing more that I would have wanted.

Yes, I recommend
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Elizabeth
10/10

Studying abroad in Buenos Aires through IES gave me the best possible experience I could have asked for. I got to do everything I was expecting to be able to do, like traveling, improving my Spanish, making international friends, exploring the nature of Argentina, and more. More importantly, however, I gained a lot of knowledge and experience in ways I didn't expect. I got to deeply understand the culture and history of a country I admittedly knew very little about before going there, and I now feel intimately connected to a completely different part of the world. The community of Buenos Aires was so intertwined with all of my experiences there that I left feeling like I had truly become a knowledgeable part of it. IES gave me so many of the opportunities I took to get connected to the city, and I am so thankful that they as a program understand that studying abroad is a multifaceted experience. In classes and outside of classes, IES provided the framework I needed to have my ideal study abroad experience.

How can this program be improved?
This program is pretty great as is, and I cannot think of an obvious improvement.
Yes, I recommend
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Kira
10/10

IES abroad made sure that everything was taken care of so all I had to do was show up and have the time of my life! Living in the Galapagos is a whole other world; the community is incredibly tight-knit and so kind. Latino culture is extremely warm and living with my host families was an absolutely amazing experience. We bonded over cultural differences and it was an opportunity for me to be immersed in their culture while also being able to teach my families about my own culture. This program is extremely hands-on and research based! If you love being outside this program absolutely takes advantage of being in the Galapagos and each course has a ton of field trips and outdoor excursions so that you really get to know the Galapagos Islands and all they have to offer! If you are scuba certified and in the Marine Ecology track each of your classes has a scuba component too! This program absolutely changed my life and it will change yours too!

Yes, I recommend

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