Fantastic cultural experience, but awkward academic experience

Ratings
Overall
8
Academics: 3
Support: 6
Fun: 7
Housing: 9
Safety: 7
Review

From the homestays, to the excursions, to the staff’s expert understanding of local custom, and to the final Independent Study Project (ISP), the program from start to finish helps dip its participants into Indonesian culture. By the end of the program, I felt confident in my ability to navigate Indonesian life and problem solve unfamiliar situations there; and I gained life-changing skills that have followed me out of Indonesia.

On the other hand, the academic assignments (with the exception of the ISP) left much to be desired. It was clear that the staff was unfamiliar with the Western-esque standards of oral presentations and essays. As a result, rarely could the staff provide assistance with said assignments--either help during the process of crafting the assignments themselves or afterwards when locating areas for improvement--and they graded only on the basis of whether or not we followed basic instructions such as the correct page limit and citation style, rather than grading for content, structure, and/or style.
If these assignments weren’t going to end up on our transcripts, then I could let this oversight go; but the fact remains that our academic work in Indonesia has consequences back in America.

Would you recommend this program?
Yes, I would
Year Completed
2019