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SIT Study Abroad participant SIT Study Abroad participant

Argentina: Public Health in Urban Environments

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

SIT Public Health

First of all i want to clarify what i think the goals of an SIT program ought to be before talking about why I enjoyed my experience so much: I think a study abroad program should teach you things both in and out of the classroom meaning that you should be increasing your knowledge academically but also growing as a person.
SIT and Buenos Aires did both those things. Compared to other programs i think SIT was fairly rigorous both with its long hours in classrooms/on field trip and the epic ISP research paper required at the end of the program. We learned a lot about the epidemiological profile of Argentina and the history and functioning of its health care programs and how it has now achieved, at least theoretically, universal coverage.
Out of the classroom i really grew as an individual- I became far more independent and was allowed to do so because of the support network created by SIT and the homestay i was placed in (Shoutout Nora Fisch! she is a saint!!!!). When we traveled to other parts of the country they helped connect us with Argentinians living there with whom we could hang out and learn more about Argentine culture.
Overall, I learned a lot from this experience and would suggest it to anyone with experience in Spanish, an open mind, and a desire to grow as a person.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    5

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Structured but solid program

It's true, SIT isn't for everyone. This program especially is very structured, with a lot of class time at the beginning of the program, planned excursions, and little time to immerse yourself in the Argentine culture unless you seek it on your own, which is totally doable!

If you're interested in public health, this is the program for you. While the academics can be repetitive, combined with the excursions the lectures provide you with a solid understanding of the Argentine public health system, and the independent research project (ISP) during the last month of the program gently forces you to conceptualize your understanding and put it to use.

The staff on this program are amazing and will do anything they can to make this the best experience for you. The host families are wonderful and make the experience so much more worth it, truly immersing yourself in the culture - and with a little motivation, you can also get out there and find Argentine friends and typical activities. Based in (in my opinion) one of the best cities in the world, this program has a lot to offer and is great for people who want to be health professionals. I would recommend it, it's a life-changing experience that you'll never forget, and the program is only improving!

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Social Life

    8

  • Health and Safety

    8

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    6

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Academics

    7

Allows students to be focused on specific topics at a time

Visiting the maternity hospital in Mendoza and helping the neonatal nurse clothe and prepare newborns to be presented to their parents for the first time.

I knew I wanted to study Spanish in Latin America and wanted a serious program in which I could learn and be surrounded by likeminded individuals. As a pre-med, the public health topic certainly attracted my attention, and the rest was history. I also really liked that two excursions were planned within the program.

I stayed with a host family in their apartment. The family provided breakfast and dinner daily as a part of their contract, and we were given a daily stipend of a very reasonable amount of money for lunch on our own. The program also included public transportation costs. Travel to the I-Salud building where classes were held took approximately 35 minutes from my apartment via subway, though with public transportation you never know what kind of delay you'll encounter.

Overall Rating

7/ 10

  • Social Life

    9

  • Health and Safety

    6

  • Program Administration

    4

  • Cultural Immersion

    4

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Academics

    6

Good program but lack of immersion

The excursions were great!

I chose the program because I wanted to focus in Public Health and I am a Hispanic Ling major so I wanted to go to a Spanish-speaking country.

I lived with a homestay- great experience, really recommend it.

Overall Rating

7/ 10

  • Academics

    6

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    4

  • Program Administration

    4

  • Health and Safety

    4

  • Social Life

    9

Good program but lack of immersion

I enjoyed the program a lot and make a lot of new American friends but I kinda wish I had the opportunity to interact more with the host culture apart from my home stay. The academics were alright but I didn't really enjoy how the lecturers switched every week, sometimes it was hard to understand.

Overall Rating

7/ 10

  • Academics

    6

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    5

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

A Unique Look at Argentina's Health System

If you're looking for a true immersion experience, this may not be your cup of tea. However, as a whole you will get a good look at Buenos Aires and the unique health system that is Argentina's. The way this program is structured allows students to be focused on specific topics at a time, which is really nice rather than juggling 4-5 classes back home, and two week-long travel excursions are included. It's a program in which you can almost guarantee that your GPA won't suffer if you work somewhat hard, something that is not necessarily true of many of the direct enrollment programs. Oh, and in case you didn't know, it's historically a very female-dominated program.

Academics:
The academics as a whole throughout the course are not challenging, though this is done intentionally to allow students to experience the culture. Lecturers change about weekly, so adaptability is a must. Expectations on assignments are not always crystal clear, though with some effort it is not difficult to succeed. This program will teach you to be flexible and patient, though ultimately I did come away having learned a good deal about the Argentine health system.

Living Situation:
My host family was awesome; SIT did a wonderful job listening to my requests. The only thing I would have preferred were some slightly healthier meals than tortas, pasta, and pizza all the time, but when in Argentina, right?

Cultural Immersion:
Unless you seek cultural immersion yourself you're not going to get it here. The classes are exclusive to the program and there aren't organized opportunities to meet people. Unless you have an outgoing and welcoming host sibling around your age or take the initiative to put yourself out there in some other way (I would suggest joining a gym), you're going to spend most of your time with your American classmates.

Program Administration:
The directors are extremely dedicated and care deeply for the students. They were super supportive with everything from trip planning to general emotional counsel. At times plans change on the fly, but when it all comes down to it the people in charge are capable and caring people. Some considered the administration slightly over involved, which I can appreciate though it's only out of compassion.