Presenting 6 incredible ways your life will change if you study abroad.
Illustration by Uttam Ghosh/Rediff.com
Want to know the world up and close? Then there's absolutely no alternative to studying abroad.
Even if you have not considered pursuing further studies beyond your home turf or are in a dilemma about the return on investment of an overseas education, taking at least one course will work wonders.
Apart from helping you earn you a lifetime of experience, it will help you stage with a global peer group, interact with celebrity scholars, entrepreneurs and renowned professors, and immerse in diverse cultures.
Studying abroad is a roller coaster ride towards knowing yourself better and learning a great deal along the way.
Here are some reasons why every student should take at least one course abroad:
1. Diverse course selection
Universities abroad offer a wide range of courses in terms of subject matter, curriculum, length, duration and discipline, to list a few.
If you want to specialise in an area or broaden your knowledge base there is a course for your preferences.
You can attend a semester, opt for an exchange programme or enroll in summer programme.
Also, you can join a preparatory or foundation programme right before you plunge into your major.
Besides academic programmes, you can participate in professional courses that provide you internship experience.
The diverse learning opportunities and flexible ambience are aimed to cater to every student's needs and provide them the platform for growth and education in their preferred areas of study.
2. Holistic learning
Studying abroad allows you to be part of a vibrant learning environment.
As most international curriculum facilitate all-round development of students, you'll be encouraged to go beyond textbooks and engage in self-study, project work, research and much more.
You'll be riding the crest of self-learning, and evolve as a critical thinker.
The pedagogy beautifully blends theory and practical application to help students acquire a comprehensive idea about any area of study.
Assignments are not confined to writing answer scripts alone, but are designed to make students work in groups and present their response in front of the professor and peers.
Hence, students get the opportunity to enhance their subject knowledge, side by side brush up significant soft skills including communication, collaboration, time management and project handling.
3. Global network
Campuses abroad provide a unique opportunity to meet people from across the globe, expand your network and build new friendships.
Your university campus will be a hub of activities, exchange of ideas and dynamic interactions among peers of diverse nationality and ethnicity.
You'll be surprised to discover how easily you all bond.
They will grow to become your extended family and be your local support system.
In your short study stint, you'll have an incredible list of international acquaintances and well-wishers who would cast immense influence on your path to achieving milestones, providing recommendations, and further points of contact.
4. College application/prospect
If you aspire to study abroad later, a stint at a foreign university will positively impact your college application.
The admission officials look for candidates who will be able to adjust to the cultural differences and academic demands of studying abroad.
Hence, your exposure to an international academic environment will ensure them that you'll not have pressing issues about the shift and the change will not hamper your learning.
A single course from a reputed foreign institution reinforces your dedication to better yourself and speaks about your ability to welcome new challenges.
Your international exposure will imply that you are comfortable with people outside of your culture and community, and can get along with everyone.
Studying abroad also affirms that you can do well independently.
While you are away in a foreign land, you learn to find your way, socialise with people who do not share your culture and language and in the process, accumulate a great deal of experience that makes you confident and self-reliant.
Furthermore, you will reside within an academic culture where you would find people to be more individualistic and focused towards their goals as each one of your peers has come to study with an objective.
Hence, you too will learn to work independently and efficiently, undertake initiative and be more enterprising.
6. Global perspective
As you enter the portals of your institution, you also embark upon a journey of myriad personal and professional challenges that will break the barriers of the mind and rewire you to think like a global citizen.
Studying abroad is such a wholesome experience of knowing other cultures, diverse individuals, different lifestyles, traditions and ethos, all on one campus that you no longer would be able to see an issue from a singular point of view.
This amazing exposure of living every moment with an international community of peers will enrich you to appreciate diversity and become more accepting of others.
Before you consider opting for a full-fledged study abroad program, if you pursue at least one course in a foreign university, you will be able to test drive the system, the ambience and your ability to blend in.
It will act as a prelude and prepare you better for the bigger picture.
This article is written by Vibha Kagzi, Founder and Chief Education Officer, Reachivy.com