SIT Study Abroad

Program Reviews

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Lucy
8/10

This program is an incredible opportunity for personal and academic growth. I learned so much about the Argentine healthcare system and improved my Spanish 10 fold. I loved that the classes had guest lecturers on their specialty topic because we were able to learn from the top professionals in that area. My favorite aspect academically was the ability to conduct my own research project in another province. I learned so much from this experience. Personally, I made incredible friends who I know I will be friends with for the rest of my life. I also loved exploring the city; I come from a small suburb and was really pushed outside of my comfort zone in a new large city which was great. I also loved my host mom and had an incredible experience living in her home. I would highly recommend this program if you are looking to push yourself outside of your comfort zone and really learn about healthcare in Argentina!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Lydia
10/10

The Arts and Social Change program in Prague is a unique opportunity for students to witness first hand how impactful art is for a culture’s politics, history, and community. Rather than learning about Czech culture from afar, students will become a part of it by participating in different aspects of the arts and living in the community. Because of this learning style, years later I still maintain friendships with my fellow students and feel deep gratitude and connection to Prague and the Czech Republic.

How can this program be improved?
n/a
Yes, I recommend this program
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Elizabeth
10/10

The SIT Czech Arts and Social Change Program truly stands out from every other study abroad program I had considered. The small cohort, supportive program staff, and local professors make the academic courses rigorous and culturally enriching. Each course offered an opportunity for both classroom and experiential learning, taking theory out of the classroom and putting it into practice. There is an immense amount of creative support in the students individual interests.

The SIT Prague Program really encouraged me to ask questions. As a college student, I felt independent and open to everything. However the program pushed me out of my comfort zone. I realized that college is still quite a controlled environment, and that I shouldn’t be afraid to question everything.

My fellow students were amazing, and I still keep in touch with nearly everyone! My host family was also the best I could ask for. I still keep in touch with them as well.

If you want a rigorous academic program, with local professors, amazing regional excursions, opportunities to pursue individual interests, and never feeling like an American tourist, this program is for you. I could not recommend it more highly.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Victoria
10/10

I absolutely loved this program and wouldn't change my experience for the world. I learned so much about Durban, South Africa, Zulu culture, Apartheid history, race, class, education, etc. I thought the homestay experience was one of the absolute best parts of the program and I still keep in touch with the families I lived with. The program is definitely difficult, but so profound and worth any hardships you may encounter. You will be uncomfortable, embarrassed, lost, and unsure, but it wouldn't be an authentic experience without times of feeling that way. This program will support you and the staff were some of the best people I've ever met. I enjoyed this program so, so much and it has changed the way I view the world and has inspired me to seek international experience post-grad.

How can this program be improved?
More emphasis on Zulu language learning!
Yes, I recommend this program
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Ben
10/10

After spending almost 4 months in India with SIT, I can't imagine doing my study abroad experience anywhere else. If you have an interest in public health, this is the program for you. The homestay experience was amazing and I felt like a big brother to my host-brothers and host-sister. Also, having home cooked Indian food every day is hard to complain about. I loved learning Hindi and feeling like I was a part of the culture, even if it was only for a few months. The SIT staff treats you like family and you won't want to let go when you hug them goodbye at the end of the trip. Lastly, having the experience of completing an independent study project was a crucial aspect of my trip and really helped to put all of our lessons into perspective. This program helps you succeed in every aspect of the trip, such as helping you transition, being a shoulder to lean on when you need it, or giving you suggestions on where to travel on a weekend or after the program. If you want to step outside of your comfort zone and establish yourself in a crazy, stimulating and colorful environment and culture, this is the program for you!

Yes, I recommend this program
Malaika
9/10

I did the SIT IHP Cities in the 21st Century program this spring of 2018, and it was the best decision I could take for myself. My track went to Ahmedabad (India), Sao Paulo (Brazil) and Cape Town (South Africa). I had wanted to go to India and Brazil for a long time and getting the chance to visit through the program was amazing because I got to engage critically with the cities we stayed in and got to know it beyond its tourism(which can often be superficial and harmful). The wonderful country teams that hosted us were open and insightful about the way their cities functioned, the problems they faced, and all the forms of resistance they held. We learned about the cities from so many different angles and teachers - visiting professors, working professionals, activists, community organizers, etc. I also loved the homestay component of the program because the families made us feel welcome and showed us the city in their own eyes. The group of students I became a class of were another big part of the experience since we spent 4 months together! We actively built community throughout the program and got to know each other quite well. The 4 months were obviously not without difficulty of adjusting to new places, dealing with different personalities, balancing the school work with exploring the cities, etc but it was overall enriching and positive. I recommend to anyone who loves to experience new things and is open to it. And of course, people who love urban studies! (ps. I am not an urban studies person, I study history, and I still loved it)

Yes, I recommend this program
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Josie
6/10

This program exposed me to humanitarian aid and global health and what people can do to get involved. The different briefings at different organizations exposed me to an array of different career options. Morocco was also a very special experience. There was much more cultural interaction and exposure in Morocco. The academics in this program is not rigorous which I recommend taking advantage of by traveling. Explore the surrounding countries and explore Switzerland (use the Swiss Pass! You can even go to parts of France and Italy with it). Not the right program if you really want to improve French. The right program if you want to learn more about global health.

How can this program be improved?
More interest from the staff, better lecturers, early peer interaction support, more local interaction, more exposure to local culture
Yes, I recommend this program
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Lauren
9/10

I beyond highly recommend SIT: Jordan.

To begin, this program used to be titled Modernization and Social Change, but the name switched to Geopolitics, International Relations, and the Future of the Middle East. Just so you know!

I began my experience in Jordan not with SIT, but with a small, independent language center for two summers. While we went on trips and I enjoyed that experience, SIT gave going to Jordan a whole other dimension.

The staff is extremely supportive. I was met at the airport by a staff member, and everything was very organized. After, we went to the hotel to stay for a week of orientation, which did a very good job of preparing us for Jordan. I felt it could have been maybe a little shorter, but I had experience in Jordan before, so that may just have been me. The hotel was very nice, and it was lovely to get to know staff and fellow students during that first week. Throughout the entire program, the staff went above and beyond to help us feel comfortable, to support our Arabic, and to support us during the ISP/internship period.

After the first week, we were given a stipend and sent to live with our host families. SIT GIVES A STIPEND- THIS ONE IS 50 JD A WEEK. This is a huge draw to SIT for me. I didn't know about the stipend originally, and I was shocked to find out about it because other, similarly priced programs do not offer one. This is a major pull to SIT- I spent very little of my own personal money on cost of living expenses. Also, SIT offers a Pell Grant match which is super helpful.

The host families are also an amazing aspect of SIT. I learned much more Jordanian Arabic and much more about Jordan's culture than before, and most of the host families were pretty amazing. Some people only had so/so experiences, but they were in the minority. In general, everyone was happy to have that support and family atmosphere. People really welcome you quickly, but also most families have been with SIT for a while, so your presence isn't a huge deal either. I loved that, and felt pretty comfortable almost immediately. Also, the food was AMAZING.

Academics were okay. I would not necessarily say this program shines in that department. Classes are usually taught by guest speakers, who come in and give a lecture on one topic. However, it was cool to learn from a variety of perspectives, and we often went on field visits (such as to the senate, local NGOs, etc). Arabic classes are not heavily emphasized, and if your goal is to learn a whole lot of fusha or Arabic in general, I would think about a different program. This program shines in giving you a diverse set of speakers who present a variety of ideas, as well as providing an amazing host family experience (which helps with Jordanian Arabic), and putting on great, informative trips. It is just not extremely rigorous academically.

That said, students get the option to do an internship or independent research project, and that was an amazing experience. I did a research project, and the opportunity to conduct field research while abroad is not one to be taken lightly. People always ask me about it when I bring it up, and it helped in an internship interview. It helped me identify a field of study I want to go on to get a Masters in, and the overall support system was great! Students who did internships also seemed to learn a lot and enjoy their work.

I definitely felt like I came away learning a whole lot about Jordan and the region, especially considering I had studied there previously. Additionally, a trip to the UAE was included in our tuition. This was amazing- we got to see the contrast between Jordan and a wealthy Gulf state, which fit the program theme well. We also had tons of fun in Dubai!! In Jordan, we went to Um Qais, Petra, Wadi Rum, the Dead Sea, and Aqaba. All of those trips were super, super fun!!

In all, I highly recommend SIT: Geopolitics. The trips were great, the host families were unique, and you get much more for paying the same amount as comparable programs. Even though the academics are not rigorous, I think I learned more about Jordan and the Middle East than my friends on comparable programs. The research project was an invaluable opportunity. However, I did feel like I learned less Arabic. The woman who directed the Arabic program was great and always willing to offer extra help, and I adore her! But overall, I think the program emphasizes it less.

How can this program be improved?
A greater emphasis on Arabic.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Rebekah
9/10

SIT Ecuador: Development, Politics, and Languages could not have been a better experience. I applied to the program on a whim following the advice of my study abroad advisor and it could not have been a more perfect fit, and the hands-on, field-based experience we had was once in a lifetime. From city life in Quito to the coast of Guayaquil and the Galapagos Islands, all the way to the Amazon, we had the unique opportunity of being able to learn first-hand about Ecuador's most pressing socio-political issues from those directly involved in grassroots organizations and those affected by the ever-shifting political climate. Fabian, the academic director, is the most knowledgeable and passionate teacher I have ever had in my life. He and Sofia (the assistant director) were a constant support structure throughout the entire process and were always ready, willing, and able to lend an ear, a hand, or whatever you might need. I was able to immerse myself in Ecuadorian culture through my homestays and consequently improved my Spanish dramatically. The ISP was an incredible experience; I was able to prove to myself that I can, do, and will belong in academia, an aspect I have been doubting about myself for a long time. The opportunity to engage in field-based primary research at that level with the level of support that we had is something incredibly unique. The best part of the program is that you can really mold it to your academic interests- whether you're passionate about the environment, human migration, linguistics, gay rights, etc. etc., you can make the program what you want it to be!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Phoebe
9/10

This program is an incredible opportunity for students studying ecology or environmental science! I had had great experiences traveling throughout Ecuador, learning about local ecology, and making new friends. The classes, and especially the independent research project, made me more qualified for ecology research positions. Taking classes in Spanish and living with a host family has made me much more confident in Spanish classes at my home university. I loved living with my host family, and I'll never forget all of the local traditions and foods they introduced me to. The program directors and host families are so proud of their country, and it's easy to see why! This was an incredible experience and I would recommend it to anyone interested in ecology and conservation.

How can this program be improved?
Communication between program directors and students could be improved.
Yes, I recommend this program