For some, the idea of studying abroad is the opportunity of a lifetime. While, for others, it’s a foreign experience they’re too hesitant to try. If you have the opportunity to study abroad, not only does it mean getting a valuable education but it also means doing so in a mysterious and amazing place. Read on to discover 7 reasons to study abroad.
1. Experience a New Culture
If you’ve never traveled away from home, you likely don’t know much about other cultures. When you study abroad, you’re exposed to an entirely different world. New people, traditions, foods, and customs. A lot of college students leave the state to attend a university. But if you have the opportunity to leave the country, your experience will be that much richer and more memorable. Experiencing a new culture will give you a better perspective on life and a better understanding of people and places outside of your immediate comfort zone. Studying abroad may also help you to see your own culture in a different way, through the eyes of your host nation’s natives.
2. See the World
As a college student, funds are usually limited. Which means taking vacations is a rarity. If given the opportunity to study abroad, think of it as an extended vacation. You’ll travel to a beautiful, foreign land where you can experience the architecture, museums, festivals, and other natural wonders the host country has to offer. Another advantage to studying abroad is the ability to travel to other nearby countries. There’s no rule stating that you have to remain in your host country the entire time. During breaks and on weekends, take advantage of your geography and expand into neighboring nations.
3. Learn a New Language
Depending on where you choose to study, you may need to learn a new language. While this may be challenging at first, it will be extremely beneficial in the future. Bilingual employees are in high demand and the demand is predicted to rise in the coming years. It might be in your best interest to learn the basics of your host country’s language before leaving. Once you’re there, you’ll quickly catch on by listening to the native speakers. The more time spent in your host country, the more fluent you’ll become.
4. Meet Amazing People
Studying abroad means meeting amazing and influential people, both at your university and outside. Some study abroad programs give students the option of living with a host family. This provides you the opportunity to create long lasting friendships and relationships with people from a foreign land. They will also be instrumental in helping you adjust to the new culture you now find yourself immersed in. Just be sure to keep in touch with your new companions when you return to the States.
5. Personal Development Opportunities
Studying abroad will help you grow as a person in more ways than you may realize. First off, you’ll gain a sense of independence and responsibility, far beyond that with which you’re accustomed to at home. This will be a time for self-discovery and finding out what you’re truly made of. Not to mention, you’ll learn to be a minimalist. Students studying abroad often have far fewer possessions than those who remain home. You’ll also gain a greater appreciation for your family, friends, and home once you experience life elsewhere. But one thing that won’t fade with time is the memories and experiences from your time abroad. These will last a lifetime.
6. Take Advantage of Low Tuition Rates
College students are always budgeting. The cost of tuition, room and board, and books leave most college students scrambling for cash. But what if you could study in a foreign land for less than the cost of attending college at home? Seems too good to be true? It’s not. Chances are you can score a substantial scholarship to study abroad. Grants and funding is often provided by both the institution and the government, depending on your need. Some of the most reasonable tuition rates are found in Europe, Latin America, and Asia. You’ll also learn how to calculate and budget using foreign currency. Just one more thing to add to your list of worldly experiences.
7. It Looks Amazing on Your Resume
The job market is a ruthless place, which means anything you can do to get an edge over the competition is in your best interest. Employers know that students who study abroad bring unique skills and visions to the table. You’re more worldly, cultured, and knowledgeable about different things than your competitor. If you took advantage of learning another language, that’s just one more thing to help set you apart from the rest. Chances are, you’ll return from studying abroad a more mature, intelligent, and confident version of yourself.
Studying abroad isn’t just about going to another country. It’s about growing and changing as a person. It’s about capitalizing on an opportunity and embarking on a life changing adventure. And it’s something you should most definitely do, given the opportunity.