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''Hamilton College Year Abroad in Spain''
This program is based in Madrid and largely made up of from students from schools such as Williams, Amherst, Swarthmore, the Claremont colleges, and a few other small liberal arts institutions. The program is unique because it requires
spanish to be spoken at all times during the semester/year and although at first this just leads to a lot of awkward conversations in hideous spanish ultimately it does make a difference. The key is to try to stay speaking spanish only as long as possible.
Classes take place in a converted mansion/building near one of Madrid's private (read: beautiful, rich, and less academically inclined
spanish women) universities, SAN PABLO CEU. Students live with families that don't speak any english, the quality of your home life can either be a fun family that includes you all the time or a grandmother who lives alone in a private museum of antiques , it can really be hit or miss. Classes are all in Spanish but taken with the other americans, it is possible to take classes at the university next door.
The Hamilton Program is expensive
, most host families recieve around 900 euros a month per student staying with them, of course there are tuition and and other costs just like regular school. However, the money does go to good use because the program sponsors several excursions each semester with transportation, hotels, and food all included. Yeah you already paid for it, but after travelling with your friends as cheaply as possible it's nice to stay in 4 star hotels and eat multi-course meals with all the wine you could ever want.
Probably the best part of the program is its flexibility - if you want to take courses directly at a Spanish university, you can. If you want to take classes at the Syracuse program center in Madrid, well, you can do that too. You can take classes in English or in Spanish, and the course offerings are fairly extensive. SU will even help you find an internship in Spain! In general classes are very easy, but the quality of instruction is decent - if you try really hard, you might even learn something!
Host families are, like everywhere, hit
and miss. The program is made up mostly of Syracuse students - apprarently the SU Madrid program is where all the rich kids go if they want to slack and party like crazy for a semester, if that helps give an idea of what a lot of the students are like. Don't expect deep class discussions.
The orientation programs at the beginning of the semester were interesting, and after 2 weeks of hard travel it felt really nice to settle down into a real house (well, apartment) and actually unpack. Mare Nostrum is probably the more academic orientation program, but it's also fairly difficult if you actually care about the grade (which you probably don't, so no worries!).
=== Japan ===
THE BEST. Who wants to go to Europe
!?!? The culture is fascinating, and the food is amazing!
=== Italy ===
Also, if you speak Italian well enough I would encourage you not to go through American program but enroll at a local Italian university directly. Why? Being a student in Italy is not particularly hard, you get to know more fun people, you improve your language skills 1000 times better and itâ€™s CHEAP! Did you know that a public university costs around 600 euros per year (approx. $800)?
Although nothing improves your language skills like living with an Italian family. Plus the food cooked by your host mom is a million times better than what you can cook yourself,
plus you get included in lots of family outings and experience what living in Italy is really like.
== Other Programs ==
Study abroad programs, including those that are local or involve travel to multiple countries.
[Sea Education Association ]]===Spend six weeks in Woods Hole, Cape Cod, taking classes in oceanography, nautical science, and maritime studies, followed by six weeks sailing on one of S.E.A.'s 134' Brigantine schooners conducting oceanographic research. Port stops typically include 1-3 foreign countries. When Williams-Mystic does its 10-day sailing portion uses S.E.A.'s boats. A fantastic program, for science-majors and non-science majors alike . www.sea.edu. Contact 07kal for more information.
=== [[Williams-Mystic Program|Williams-Mystic]] ===
Live co-op style in Mystic, Connecticut, in a charming old house with 3-6 other students (some from Williams and many from other schools). Get 24/7 access to Mystic Seaport, just across the street; you can visit this huge maritime museum with an impressive collection of buildings and even more impressive collection of boats any time you want. Take fascinating, Williams-caliber classes and conduct independent research, plus get to know 20 students and 5 professors really well. Get college credit for sailing a 133' tall ship off the New England or Florida coast, visiting the Pacific coast, and visiting Louisiana; get Winter Study credit for demonstrating sail handling and other traditional maritime activities in the Seaport, or learning blacksmithing, maritime music boatbuilding, sailing, or celestial navigation. What could be better than that?