Institute for Study Abroad, Butler University
Institute for Study Abroad, Butler University Programs
Study abroad at the National University of Ireland, Galway. Take part in a program that offers many Irish cultural courses. Students will be immersed in a flexible and friendly...
Institute for Study Abroad, Butler University Reviews
Stepping Back in Time
Submitted by Rachel Hobbs - University of California Berkeley | September 21, 2017
I chose York as a way of going back to my origins: my family is historically from the part of England that was invaded by Vikings, and I knew that York was a part of that history. I never expected how deeply it would make an impact on me. I landed first in London and IFSA-Butler staff and students could not have been more like instant family. I did not know anyone going into the program, and I was a little worried about making friends since we were all going to different universities around England. But one of the London coordinators became like a second mom to me, and she took the train from London up to York several times throughout the year so we could have tea. IFSA took the best care of us, and never skipped out on making us feel welcome. The London staff organize a trip to the Lake District each semester, and we stayed in the most luxurious yet simple accommodation at the base of a mountain. Waking up every morning with a full English breakfast and in the middle of misty mountains was a feeling that my heart will never forget. We spend our days in the Lake District retreat doing adventure activities, which I chose to do via ferrata, kayaking, and ghyll scrambling (an northern English word for climbing up waterfalls)!
The university may be in a smaller city, but the university is large and has tons of stuff to get involved with. I did Model UN and Scandinavian Society. The entire city feels like a castle because the stone city walls still surround the old city border, and the streets are cobblestone. My favorite time of year was seeing the city around Christmas time. No city does Christmas better than York, with mulled wine carts and old English traditions. My friends from my time there are some of the deepest bonds I've ever had with people, and I now have friends from all over the world including France, Denmark, Russia, Kazakhstan, and Northern Ireland. I'm already planning a trip back to York to see them, and some of them are planning trips to visit me. Studying with IFSA Butler opened up professional opportunities I never would have had otherwise, and I could not be more grateful for my experience.
The one word of warning I would say is that the insurance that IFSA Butler makes you buy does not cover medical expenses in Iceland, and I unfortunately had a medical crisis arise while traveling in Iceland so that was an unanticipated and very costly event.
Program: IFSA-Butler University of York
Big city immersion
Submitted by Liz S - UW-Madison | September 05, 2017
I studied abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina for 5 months and was enamored with my experience. This was my second time doing an immersion exchange (first time was a 5-month program at a French high school), so I thought this would be a piece of cake. I was wrong. However, it was an exciting challenge and not more than I could handle. I would really recommend this program to someone who has had some international experience before. The best part about my program was the staff, who helped me through some emergency events but never held our hands so we could go out and experience things authentically. Buenos Aires itself has a lot of international students, so there are tons of free cultural activities to meet other people and explore the giant city. On the other hand, there is still a strong local culture and Spanish-speaking expectation that I believe it was much easier to learn Spanish than if I had been in Spain. This is not a country to choose if your goal is to travel to a different city every weekend, as transportation usually requires a plane and they aren't dirt cheap like in Europe. This is a program if you want to make great friends from different US universities and have opportunities to intern, volunteer, join a local dance or art studio, and immerse yourself in the rich and complicated history of Argentina. Academics can be as easy or demanding as you choose, and the host family was a critical component to my experience. Vamos BA!
Program: Argentine Universities Program
Forming incredible relationships in Chile
Submitted by Sarah Pearson - DePauw University | September 02, 2017
Studying abroad in Valparaíso, Chile was the best experience of my life. My favorite part of my experience was forming relationships in my new community. I had the opportunity to live with an incredible host family that made me feel like a part of the family in the matter of 10 minutes. I enjoyed sharing meals with my family everyday for lunch and dinner, and going with them occasionally to the market to buy fresh vegetables from local venders, and frequently going on walks with my dad. I also formed an incredible friendship with a Chilean girl that allowed me to learn more about the Chilean culture and Chilean sayings while spending time and fun experiences together. One of my favorite parts of my time in Chile was working at a local school to teach English as a Second Language. The students made me tear up when they threw me a surprise going-away party. Saying goodbye to the people I got to know was the hardest part, but my memories and relationships will last forever. My time abroad challenged me in different ways and made me grow. Chile, you will always hold a place in my heart.
IFSA-Butler is extremely organized, has excellent workers, and provides extraordinary experiences for students to learn and grow. I believe the integration element is essential in studying abroad, and IFSA-Butler has a large focus on making that a reality for its students. While in Chile, the director and assistant director helped make Chile my home and addressed all of my concerns and questions. The small size of the program also allows the students to form great connections and partake in incredible experiences and trips together. I was impressed with IFSA-Butler since the beginning, and highly recommend it to anyone interested in studying abroad.
Program: IFSA-Butler in Valparaiso, Chile
The grass really is greener
Submitted by Kmcgrail - Lafayette College | August 31, 2017
Studying in Galway has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I lived with a mix of American and Irish roommates, both valuable in terms of homesickness and also exploring my temporary home. And there was much to explore! Galway, though smaller than Dublin, is full of culture, history, and people and surrounded by beautiful Irish countryside. All of Ireland is accessible from Galway, and the country's largest airport in Dublin is only a bus ride away, making the rest of Europe just as accessible. The program size when I attended was relatively small compared to some study abroad programs, but this ensured that the program leaders were able to give every student individual attention and we were able to quickly form friendships. Overall, I had a great time in Galway and wouldn't change a thing (except maybe bring a better raincoat).
Valpo - you're my new home
Submitted by Jamie Murray - University of Michigan | August 31, 2017
Studying abroad in Chile with IFSA-Butler was easily the best decision I have ever made. My program was phenomenal: the IFSA-Butler staff were well organized and supportive, the other American students were eager to travel and get to know each other, my host family was incredibly welcoming, supportive and became good friends to me, and my travels around Chile and South America were an eye opening, incredible experience.
I absolutely loved studying in Valparaíso, Chile. I loved exploring the hills and endless cafes. I liked going for runs along the ocean at sunset. I loved how close "Valpo" was to Santiago so it was easy to get to the airport to fly all over the country!
My three favorite trips were Patagonia, Easter Island, and San Pedro de Atacama. All three were so different and it was incredible to see that such different terrain was within one unique country. I had class Tuesday-Thursday, so I had so many opportunities to not only explore Valparaíso, but all of the country.
As a history major, I loved learning about Chile's past: its relationship to its indigenous population, its former dictator Pinochet. While it was fascinating to take classes in another country, the majority of my learning happened outside the classroom - my host family, family friends, IFSA-Butler excursions, conversations at coffee shops...
Studying abroad with IFSA-Butler was the perfect balance of freedom and support for me. I could go wherever I wanted to, but I also knew someone was always there for me. IFSA-Butler had great excursions, but also gave us so much free time and independence. I learned so much about myself, gained so much confidence, learned about the U.S. and its relationship to other countries and felt I really grew up. I highly recommend this program!
Program: IFSA-Butler in Valparaiso, Chile