AIFS Study Abroad in South Africa: Semester or Academic Year

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About

Spend a semester or year in the captivating city of Stellenbosch, South Africa. Earn up to 15 credits through a variety of courses at the University of Stellenbosch. Courses are taught in English.

AIFS offers a traditional academic program, allowing students to choose from Stellenbosch University’s full course catalog which cover a broad range of subjects.

Live in the modern and well-appointed University Student Residence, with laundry facilities and internet included. Enjoy cultural and social activities such as sporting events, beach excursions, trips to local craft and food markets, and hiking trips. AIFS includes a 6-day trip along the famous Garden Route, and day trips to Cape Town and Robben Island, the Cape of Good Hope, and Table Mountain. Optional excursions include the Cederberg Mountains, and Addo Elephant Park and Breede River.

Highlights
  • 6-day Garden Route Tour
  • Day trip to Cape Town and Robben Island
  • Day trip to Cape of Good Hope and Boulders Beach

Questions & Answers

When I went I used Facebook to meet up with the others who were in my program. If they search "South Africa Spring 2016" into Facebook they will probably find their program, or another program around them and can join the group there. The cost of living there was very cheap when I was there a few years ago when $1 was equal to about 7 rand. Right now $1 is almost 15 rand so it is probably even...

Reviews

99%
based on 20 reviews
  • Academics 7.9
  • Support 9.5
  • Fun 9.4
  • Housing 9.2
  • Safety 8.3
Showing 16 - 20 of 20
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csherry
10/10

Stellenbosch, SA

I have never had so much fun in my life. Stellenbosch is one of the most beautiful towns I have ever had the opportunity to see. The local South Africans are very accepting, and fun to get to know. It is a much slower, happier way of live over there. There is really nothing that I did not like about the program. The classes were not that difficult, but I liked that because it gave me the opportunity to really immerse myself in the culture.
On a typical day I would have one class that was three hours long. The rest of the day I would go to the gym, local rugby games, walk around town, grab some food, etc.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Anna
10/10

Worthwhile

As a student from a large state university in Maryland, I worked in our study abroad office. I saw students wanting to go spend a semester somewhere where they could have fun, and get away. I spent my last semester of college in Stellenbosch, but it was way more than a vacation. I was deeply attached to the country, and to the people there I met. My eyes were opened to a culture I loved. This wasn't just time to enjoy gorgeous scenery or colorful life. It was a window to a world where people live among tensions of poverty, disease, inequality, and a rich history. AIFS program allowed me to visit this place where I've learned more from a new culture than ever before. I stayed 7 extra months to volunteer with a local organization.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
LeighAnn
10/10

A semester in South Africa

Before deciding to study abroad, I never had any intention of ever visiting South Africa. Like many other people I had the stereotypical view that the entire country was dangerous and poverty stricken. Don't get me wrong there are definitely some places that are, but after my semester in South Africa I have come to learn that the country is a richly diverse nation whose beauty is unsurpassed.
My experience abroad was more than I could have ever hoped for. I met so many new people from all over the world. I was able to try so many new things including surfing, paragliding, going on a safari, and staying in a traditional iXhosa village. The AIFS staff was wonderful and always there to help in every way possible. In that semester I learned so much about the culture and history of the country, but I also learned a lot about myself.
I would never trade my time in South Africa for anything and I would highly recommend this program to anyone looking for an adventurous study abroad.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Bryce
10/10

Amazing Experience!!

Studying at Stellenbosch through AIFS was an unparalleled experience. It was an opportunity that you really should not pass up. Although Stellenbosch is located just outside of Cape Town and on the outskirts of the Cape Flats it truly is something else. The AIFS staff is amazing. Hestea de Wet, or as the website calls her Mama, becomes a surrogate mother during your experience. Albeit a very hands off one, letting the student learn from their new environment. The trips that you go on this trip are unreal- be sure to take every advantage that you get. Although not directly through AIFS I had the opportunity to go Shark Cage diving, bungee jumping, and kloofing through the pristine wildlife that you'll visit on the Garden Route. All the while partaking in a full course load in intellectually challenging courses. (HIV & AIDS in South Africa, South African History, Public Theology in Post Apartheid South Africa, China and India on the African Continent, and Negotiating Transitions) Although these courses aren't offered every semester there are plenty of other challenging and interesting courses that Stellenbosch and the International Office has available.) I strongly encourage traveling to South Africa to anyone. It is a town that is going through an identity crisis and if you're looking to gain a better understanding South Africa and the societal impacts of apartheid it is readily apparent in the structure of Stellenbosch's community.

It is an experience that you will not regret!!

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Maties08
10/10

"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone."

Life in South Africa is so rich, so diverse, and yet sometimes so unexpected that I found myself waking up every day excited to see what new adventure I would find. The biggest impact that studying abroad has had on my life was learning how to appreciate even the smallest of details in a new environment. Initially, you'll miss your university in the states, you'll miss your favorite food, you'll miss your parents. Then at some point, whether it's 5 weeks or 5 months into living in Stellenbosch, you'll refer to your apartment in Concordia as home, you'll crave an ostrich sausage, and you'll be on the phone trying to convince your parents you need to stay for another term. You will meet some of your best friends while studying abroad because when that semester ends, there really is nobody else in the world that can relate to those kinds of feelings. The international staff at Stellenbosch plans fantastic trips that get you to see the country but they also encourage you to explore on your own. Take advantage of the clubs through the university and take a course that isn't only offered to international students; you can learn a lot from the South African students as well.

Yes, I recommend

About AIFS Study Abroad

AIFS is a leading provider of study abroad programs. Since 1964, more than 1.5 million students have traveled abroad with AIFS. Comprehensive program fees make it convenient for students to study abroad and experience all that the world has to offer....