Testimonials

“I came to the Balkans for a five-week summer semester abroad program in international relations and political science. Not only did I feel safe during the entirety of my visit, but I also fell in love with the region. As a political science student, what I saw and learned and who I spoke to was incredibly relevant to my studies and sparked a deeper academic interest in the former Yugoslavia. Compared to America, the Balkans are relatively inexpensive (which means lots and lots of good “cevapcici”!). I wish I could spend longer in the Balkans, so I applied for a Fulbright stipend to live in Serbia for a year post-graduation (fingers crossed!).”

MAYEESHA GALIBA

Georgetown University

“I completed a co-operative education internship with a local Serbian NGO based in Belgrade for six months in 2013. I also assisted in bringing groups of students on a six-week summer study abroad program to both Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia. I’ve found that my time in the Western Balkans was one of the most enriching experiences of my life, from a personal, academic and professional perspective. I recommend for students in the field of social sciences to engage directly with the Balkans, not only because it is safe, affordable and easy to navigate, but because it will change their outlook on the human experience.”

ISABELLA CUOMO

International SOS-Control Risks (Dubai, UAE)

“I’d highly recommend Belgrade as a location for both travel but mainly studies. I felt very safe and prices were definitely affordable compared to Boston, or my most commonly visited and favorite city ever – London! Everything I learned in the Belgrade portion of my student trip to the Balkans was completely relevant to my studies as I had just combined my major of sociology with international affairs. While I personally did not do any outside traveling from our program, I know a bunch of other students who did. Many of my friends, both at Northeastern or back home in Connecticut, inquired about my experiences in that region of the globe.”

JAKOB LEICHTMAN

Northeastern University

“When I got there and got to learn about these areas, I found that Serbia is so rich in history and there were so many complex and dynamic issues to explore in depth such as identity, international relations, culture, and the Balkans region overall. I definitely recommend taking a semester in Belgrade, it will not only add another dimension to your academic and career interests but it will also shape it and be an experience that you will never forget. As a Black, Muslim, Woman from Somalia, I was worried that it would be hard to connect, but people were so kind, welcoming and open to sharing their lives and hearing about our lives in America. Being in Belgrade was also a great experience, the food is delicious, the prices were affordable and there are so many lovely coffee shops to go try out!”

SADIYA GURHAN

Northeastern University

“Belgrade offers students an alternative to the stereotypical study abroad destinations (ex. Barcelona, Florence, Dublin, London). Serbia’s culture, history, and current political trajectory present students with a country at a crossroads, offering new and unique perspectives that challenge students to critically reflect on their own perspectives and grow as ‘global scholars’. Often in job interviews, I will be asked by the interviewer about what I thought of my time in Serbia as they’ve never met someone that has been there and are genuinely interested. This set me apart from the other interviewees and allowed me to display how my unique international experience makes me a strong candidate. For a cosmopolitan European city of over 1 million residents I found it to be very budget friendly for a student like myself. The vibrant nightlife scene in the city is acclaimed and I think that would appeal greatly to students, as would the leisurely cafe culture. Belgrade is also geographically well positioned for those that are eager to travel around Europe and has a large airport offering flights to every major European destination. It is close enough to Croatia and its famous beaches, Montenegro’s mountain/bays, and Budapest’s beautiful architecture.”

TIM MAURER

University College London

“I loved going for runs to the park/old fort and shopping down that street with all the clothing shops and such. I bought a canvas painting from the artist who painted it and it’s still my favorite piece of art I own and hangs in my room in Boston. I learned a lot relating to my studies in Belgrade, and I think what stuck with me most was the remnants of the NATO bombings and the street art with stencils of planes and the words “drop it like it’s hot”. That might have been one of the first times where I really thought about what being “American” means to others in less America-focused countries. I never felt unsafe in Belgrade, even on my own running or at night. I would definitely go back someday, and encourage other international affairs or political science students to study there. There is so much to see and learn and I ended up extending my travels to see Croatia with my family. It’s definitely worth checking out the whole region, not just from the vacation perspective but also within the context of studying the fall of the former Yugoslavia. Serbia, Bosnia, and Croatia are all so unique and distinctive in so many ways that you really need to see each, separately, and talk to people about that era and the repercussions on life today. I always find that taxi drivers have a LOT to say.”

SHELBY PHELAN

Northeastern University

“Belgrade is unlike any city I’ve traveled to before. It can have a Western European feel – a beautiful pedestrian shopping street, busy nightlife, lots of cafes – but has a history and culture that is entirely its own. It shows its past boldly, displaying the scars of the American bombing campaign, and even highlighting its ancient history. The relatively recent overthrow of Milosevic makes for fantastic political study and really helped me understand the impact political movements can have. All of these elements made my academic studying interesting and exciting, and further I found the city to be extremely affordable and fun to live in. Its proximity to lesser-known cities in Europe makes traveling easy – I highly recommend visiting Sarajevo and Mostar in Bosnia and Thessaloniki, Greece – and there’s plenty to see in Serbia as well. I would highly recommend studying in Belgrade!”

VIENO CARTER

Northeastern University

“As an Albanian, I had never thought I would have gone to Serbia. However, I am glad I did. This experience contributed to my career in diplomacy and politics greatly. Mladen is an expert in these fields and will help you understand the complex situations in Europe, including a first-hand look at Europe’s most recent war, as well as the implications it still has in Europe. Belgrade is a beautiful and historic city that is relatively cheap and has plenty of students from everywhere. Additionally, you can travel anywhere in Europe from Belgrade at very little cost. Take this opportunity to fully immerse yourselves and learn first-hand in an amazing region of the world.”

GINO NGALLOPI

Consul Assistant, Albanian Consulate, Istanbul, Turkey