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CIEE Development + Globalization in Khon Kaen, Thailand
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CIEE Development + Globalization in Khon Kaen, Thailand

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Community

    10

Incredible life-changing program...

This is an INTENSE but infinitely rewarding program. No where else will you get the experience to learn firsthand about the most pressing issues facing the planet around sustainability. The program creates incredible reciprocal relationships between many different village communities and students. It also provides priceless opportunities for personal growth, practicing teamwork, and hands-on projects.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Community

    10

Find out how you're connected and BE empowered.

If you want a study abroad experience that pushes your thoughts on education, social justice/human rights, and community, than this is an opportunity you want to take advantage of.
CIEE Khon Kaen, Thailand DG Program, does an excellent job at letting students decide what to take from their study abroad experience. When I was a student, I not only found out about another culture, but I was challenged to see, what my place was, as an American, as a student, as a consumer, etc. and how I fit into Development and Globalization.
Although, time consuming, the program will change your life and view of the world forever.
*** If your thinking about this program, I would highly suggest contacting former students! It really helps to get a personalized experience. Email CIEE and ask! Also, the program CHANGES, all the time, student gives feedback and the staff does an awesome job at giving space for students to voice their concerns. *****
Critical Feedback:
One thing I would change is spending more time on my village stays! I loved interacting and speaking Thai with my families! We had great conversation about topics that they were facing, in Thai!!! It was awesome.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    9

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health & Safety

    9

  • Community

    10

Life Changing & Well Worth it

This program focuses on the undisclosed side to development and globalization in a developing state. It focuses on topics within Agriculture, Water Resources, Mineral Resources, Land Rights, and a student assisted project with a village community.

We visited communities feeling the impact from one or more of these topics and learned from discussions with them. As students we would return and debrief how this impacts our lives within the U.S and how we can be advocates for the communities in Thailand. I felt supported by the Staff and other students throughout the semester.

This program is not for everyone. Your living situation is in a village with roosters waking you up and delicious home-cooked food by your host mom. Your discussions will be about philosophy of the environment, the commons, sustainability, and cultural interception. Your feel time is minimal, but why is free time needed when you spend your days harvesting rices, learning to cook, and playing with younger host siblings. Your time in the city is minimal and there is not a lot of opportunities for nightlife, therefore if your hopes for studying abroad are parties... this is not the program for you, unless a party to you means local Thai/Issan music is blasting through speakers at your Urban village community and you dance the night away with your host mom, her friends, and the village kids.

This program is for the individual who wants to grow academically and personally. It assisted me in presenting at an academic conference and securing graduate school and internships post undergraduate graduation.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health & Safety

    0

  • Community

    0

The most impactful learning experience I had in College!!

This program is really amazing!! The program has really deep relationships with an array of communities, NGOs, community organizers, Gov't org's etc. and these relationships enable students to get really deep in learning about the development and globalization experiences of Northeast Thailand. Also, the program really encouraged us to take ownership of our experience and ignited my passions and interests immensely. I couldn't recommend this program more whole-heartedly.

But, if you're not interested in being challenged a bit, or are just looking for an excuse to party in Thailand, this may not be the program for you.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health & Safety

    7

  • Community

    8

Glad I did it

Reading through some of the other reviews here, I would like to echo the sentiment that this program is different. It's a different type of challenge than what the typical American student is used to, but it's refreshing and is unlike a lot of the other programs out there.

As someone who didn't necessarily read the website description too closely before going on the program, I didn't have that many expectations of the program. When I was there, though, I found that it was one of the most welcoming communities I've been a part of because of the depth of conversations I had almost every day - whether with another student, with a staff member, a Thai NGO, one of my homestay families, etc.

Something else I discovered while I was on this program is how burnt out my traditional education had made me. Coming to a program that was alternative in some ways challenged me to grow in ways that I don't think I would have had I chosen to go to a different program or not go abroad at all. Though some days can be long and tiring on this program, like any academic setting can sometimes be, the content and the sources we encountered are so unique.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Community

    8

challenging but so rewarding

The CIEE-Thailand program isn't for everyone, that's true. It's for people who are interested in their personal growth and the growth of others. People who are interested in community organizing and group work would really enjoy this program. The program tries to introduce a variety of perspectives on development and globalization in Thailand and internationally. You'll have lots of conversations about how you're relating to the material, how you're relating to your homestays, how you're relating to the group, and how the content of the program is changing your view of the world. It's a really challenging but rewarding experience. I feel like I grew so much by learning from my peers, learning from my thai roommate and homestay families, and learning from the really talented group of interns.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    7

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Program Administration

    6

  • Health & Safety

    10

  • Community

    10

I loved it but not for everyone

Make sure to read the description of the program carefully before you go. Some students, who just heard "study abroad thailand" did not like the program. For the 95% who did read the description and information before we got on the airplane.....it was what we expected and we enjoyed the experience.
In this program you will stay in your dorm/apartment for 1-2 weeks before going out into rural thailand to stay with a host family for 1-2 weeks.
At the time, I found the program very rewarding, but the true reward is when you return back to America.

Cultural Immersion:
usually you stay for 1-2 weeks at your dorm/apartment which is not "cultural immersion" and then you go stay with a host family in rural thailand which is complete "cultural immersion" . The program will teach you basic Thai which is great for the host families!

Social Life:
lots of bars and clubs about 5 minute walk from the dorms

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    8

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Program Administration

    7

  • Health & Safety

    0

  • Community

    0

Not for everyone

This is a very unique and intense program. The title is a little misleading since it is definitely more focused on human rights and grassroots community organizing than it is about development and globalization. A lot of emphasis is put on alternative education models and working with your student group and unit planning is very student dependent (granted, you are expected to work within the program's framework). Sometimes it is frustrating that each of the units are so short and it is difficult to really dig into an issue until the end of the program. Cultural immersion is limited since there are no longterm homestays and most of your time is spent with your American peers. But in a lot of ways this is compensated for in the fact that you get exposure and experience with marginalized communities that you most likely would never have access to. The administration is generally good, although they can seem fairly self important. I would highly recommend speaking to an alumni before signing up for this program. If you are well suited for it, this could be an amazing and transformative experience. If you are not, you will be miserable. There is already one review on here which you should take with a grain of salt. The girl who wrote it had a negative attitude from day one and decided she didn't want to be there within the first few weeks. Instead of going home, she stayed the whole semester and continually brought down our group's moral. This is a good example of why you should not go on this program if it is not for you.