CISabroad

Program Reviews

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Emma
10/10

I spent my Fall 2017 semester in Aix-en-Provence, France where I took 4 classes and had a 1-credit internship. The professors were amazing and the internship coordinator was so helpful. I learned more than I thought possible and have so much more experience to take with me as I enter the workforce soon. Studying abroad was the best experience of my life! Even though it has been almost a full year since my semester abroad ended, I am still reaping the benefits of my program. I made memories and learned things that will always be a part of my life. Institute for American Universities (IAU) was so professional and welcoming. I would go back in a heartbeat. My host mom was the best and we still communicate over email to this day. I made friends with people from around the world that will always be a part of my life. I am so thankful to CISabroad and IAU for my excellent semester in France!

How can this program be improved?
Communication was a little unclear at times regarding the correct way to obtain my VISA. I received a checklist that ended up not being exactly correct.
Yes, I recommend this program
Joanna Kristine
10/10

The beginning of my adventures started when I was approved to go to Japan under CISabroad. From the moment I landed and met with my program advisor and coordinator Jeff Sinding, I knew I was going to have a great experience in Tokyo. Because of CISabroad, I was able to be located in a quiet neighborhood called Nakanobu, Tokyo. My school was located in Gotanda, which was just two stops away. My school was beautiful and my apartment was cozy. Everything was so convenient because CISabroad placed us by multiple restaurants and grocery stores that sell afforable produce. There’s really nowhere else where I can get such a great deal of a program that provides housing, guides you to multiple transportation options, education, and a phenomenal experience. If I could study abroad again, I would sign up with them in a heartbeat.

How can this program be improved?
I think that maybe students should vote if they want to partake in the activities, because sometimes it felt as if we were forced to do it.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Emily
9/10

My experience in Madrid was amazing. I came to love the hustle and bustle of Madrid city life. Culture was rich and adventure was always around the corner. There was always an opportunity to try something new; new places to explore, new cuisine to try, new activities to participate in. Madrid is a city that surprised me every single day. CISAbroad was extremely helpful in making me feel as comfortable as possible during my stay abroad. The onsite advisor was almost always available to answer my questions or resolve possible issues. The activities that CIS organized helped me build relationships with the other students in the program and helped me learn more about Spanish culture. I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to study abroad, especially with such an organized, helpful, and caring program, CISAbroad.

How can this program be improved?
I think that the class scheduling process was a little unorganized at the Universidad de Nebrija. A lot of my classmates, including myself, had issues with the classes that we were originally placed in, so we had to talk to staff to adjust our class schedules. However, once I was in the correct classes, I had no further issues.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Peri
10/10

Interning abroad in Wellington NZ was the best decision I've ever made! I fell in love with the city and my job and really didn't want to go home! This experience was so eye opening and I can't wait to go back to Wellington! I will never forget all of the benefits that my internship opportunity provided me! I still have kept in touch with those who I met in New Zealand and will actually be going to Scotland with a girl I met from England in the spring!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Grace
10/10

I spent 3 months interning in Sydney, Australia and within the first few weeks it felt like home! I knew every nook and cranny of that city! After working my Internship hours for the day I would make sure to schedule adventure days around the city via Public Transportation. I felt like a local by the first week! I felt safe no matter what time of the day it was. Not only did I get to know the city, but I also made incredible life long friendships. To this day - a year after my journey - I still talk to my foreign friends! I feel like I've been spoiled because my internship fit my needs perfectly and the company supported me through one on one training. CISabroad is awesome!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Kerry
10/10

This experience was one I will never forget! CISabroad was amazing in the application process, and went above and beyond while I was overseas. There were excursions included in the tuition, and the small group of CIS students became a small family. I had the privilege of traveling to 8 different countries in a short 5 month period, and was immersed in culture. I made friends that will last a lifetime, was able to live on my own in a foreign setting, and was constantly pushed out of my comfort zone in the best way possible.

How can this program be improved?
I know there is always room for improvement, but I cannot think of anything I would change about the program. It was fun, the people were helpful and easy to contact, and the experience was life changing!
Yes, I recommend this program
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Katherine
10/10

I wish I could go back. I loved JCU so much and going with CIS Abroad was the best decision I've ever made. My favorite part was that JCU Townsville was a pretty Aussie school so I wasn't just a tourist. Another thing that I loved was that excursions and some meals were covered by my program fees so I didn't have to worry about not being able to snorkel on the Great Barrier Reef because I ran out of money.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Steph
10/10

This trip was easily the best experience I've ever had. Right before writing this review I was going through my old pictures from the trip reminiscing, as I have done every single day since I got back. Not only did CIS go above and beyond while abroad, but they made sure we were all prepared before even stepping foot on the airplane. While applying, I was wary of whether or not my summer work schedule would allow me to go on the six week program, or the three week program. My program advisor reassured me that once I have my application in they can always switch it over–which took a complete weight off of my shoulders. Once accepted into our programs, CIS had an orientation meeting via video chat. This orientation meeting provided me with all of the information I could've asked for pre-departure, and I felt as if I knew everything about the city of Florence before even getting there. This definitely helped ease me into the culture, and mitigated any potential culture shock. I wound up doing the three week program, but I wish I could've stayed for an entire semester. Additionally, we had an orientation once we were settled in to our places as well. The orientation was long, but I don't know what I would have done without it. They described at length what to do, what not to do, which places to avoid, cultural norms we should respect, and even where to get the best mosquito repellant (which was VERY life changing). Once we arrived in Florence, I knew I was in the right place. The city itself is so utterly beautiful and rich in culture and history. Aside from the true magnificence of the city and the country, CIS provided us with numerous opportunities to truly dive into the culture and experience local life outside of the tourist realm. One of my favorite experiences was the gelato tour–where we toured around the city and tried two of the best gelato places in Florence, the kind you only find if you wander far off the beaten path and have a local to help you find it! My other favorite experience was the pasta making night. We all contributed to make a traditional Italian meal from scratch–including making home made pasta. These are only two of so many experiences I enjoyed and that truly made my time abroad feel like I was at home. Our site leaders, Peggy and Alessandro also had a huge impact on our trip. Not only were they there for us if we had any issues or concerns, but they helped to guide us whether we were looking for local spots to explore or needed to figure out how to use public transportation. This totally changed our experience, because we basically had locals we could text and ask any questions! We were able to explore so many cool places that we wouldn't have had the opportunity to had we not been able to reach out to Peggy and Alessandro. In addition, the institution where we studied could not have been more perfect. Florence University of the Arts offered numerous academic subjects to explore, and went above and beyond in ensuring that students got the most out of their experience. What is unique about FUA, is that they offer mandatory excursion trips as part of each course, where you get to travel outside of Florence and take part in activities pertaining to your class. For example, for my Italian class we visited Orvieto, a small town with a bit of a large secret–an entire community of caves under the city that were once occupied years before. We got to tour the caves and learned about the cities' history and why the caves were created. This was definitely one of my most memorable experiences, it was so unique and I would have never visited or even known about that town on my own. Overall, I could write an entire book about how great my experience was. CIS does it best, and they offer everything you could ask for! As a last point, I would like to mention that CIS has included health care while you are abroad. If we ever got sick or had any emergency, we had a doctor available to us that was free to visit, which really made a huge difference for me. Although I never needed to visit the doctor, I had a friend who broke her tail bone cliff jumping and was able to visit a doctor immediately because of this. It eased the students' minds knowing we had somewhere to go if anything happened to us, which really matters especially in a foreign country.

How can this program be improved?
The only thing I would say about this program is that the housing in our specific program could have been better. We did not have the best housing, although everyone else on our trip had good apartments. We must have gotten a bad luck of the draw–but listening to the students and their housing complaints is necessary and not to be taken lightly. I would suggest if possible a back up apartment kept open should any of the students have any serious problems with their housing–that would have really helped my roommates and I.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Linden
10/10

CISabroad coordinated airport picks up, which trust me, after coming off from a 17.5-hour flight from China, and another 2-hour flight to Bangkok was NECESSARY. Getting to the housing to the airport was very easy. It struck me on my first night there, after I had walked to 7/11, how natural I felt there. A the pre-departure orientation at my university a representative from CIS came who has been to the university in Thailand. She was able to outline for me what just some day to day things I could expect are. Like wearing a uniform, eating at 7/11 and the importance of carrying cash (fun fact! many places in Thailand don't take credit card). I felt supported when I was there enough so that I could live my life in the way that I wanted to abroad. I couldn't have done it without CIS!

How can this program be improved?
I think that CIS should offer more support in obtaining the student visa. And I don't think they should list the Mahidol program as being in Bangkok! In reality, students live and go to school about 30 minutes from the outskirts of Bangkok. This wasn't a bad thing AT ALL! It was so much more of local life. Not a lot of the business spoke English and things are a lot cheaper outside of the city.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Jorge
10/10

I never expected to get the chance to study abroad since I never had to funds or the know-how of the application process. Yet, I had to tell myself that this time in college would be the only time I would get to do so. CISAbroad was the first program that was recommended to me and I have never regretted taking that first choice. In fact, I was beyond ecstatic that I did because I got to go see and explore a new part of the world I never thought I would get the chance to. The staff was helpful in preparing activities for the student and made the get along since there was a high chance that not everyone knew each other at the start. Additionally, learning Japanese was not that difficult since the staff was knowledgeable and had an easy to understand curriculum. I had some many fond and wonderful memories there and will not soon forget them. This experience made me feel full of confidence to travel again and see the rest of the world possibly. Hopefully, it will be soon.

Yes, I recommend this program