Are you a university student who aspires to go overseas to study? Or are you an early-career professional who wants to study abroad to acquire an advanced level degree like an MBA, a master’s in computer science, a professional degree in hospitality, design or perhaps the social sciences? Regardless of the subject you pursue, studying abroad is a significant investment of time and finances. However, it is also a significant investment in yourself and an experience that can yield life-changing benefits and become an integral part of your future personal and professional development.
In this blog post, I will highlight six transformative benefits that you can expect from studying abroad. These insights are based on my and my friends’ educational experience at universities overseas. Numerous international students have gone on to build remarkable careers after their study abroad experiences.
Key benefits of studying abroad
Below, I will delve into the key benefits that studying abroad can offer:
Exposure: Studying abroad exposes you to a new world of knowledge, information, and learning. This exposure takes place in an environment that is different from what you are accustomed to. Being exposed to something new adds layers to your personality, which can be immensely beneficial in the long run by enhancing your skill set.
Experience: Studying abroad provides opportunities for internships and work experiences that greatly contribute to a student’s personal growth. As you engage in research assignments and project work, you acquire new approaches to work. This experience enables you to gain a deeper understanding of how organizations and corporations function in different parts of the world. It is invaluable because, as a student or professional, it equips you with flexibility and exposes you to innovative working methods. Consequently, the experience of learning and working during a study abroad program plays a pivotal role in shaping a successful future in your chosen professional field.
Gaining Global Perspective: One of the key benefits of studying abroad is the opportunity to live in a different country alongside students or professionals from various nations. This automatically broadens your intellectual horizons and grants you a global perspective. Rather than being confined to narrow regional or national viewpoints, you can perceive things through an international lens. This global perspective is highly valued by recruiters in today’s globalized world, where projects, businesses, and corporations draw upon global expertise and resources from different countries. Possessing a broader understanding of business, whether in finance, data, management, policy studies, social sciences, hospitality, or healthcare, is seen as a significant asset.
Creating International Networks: Studying abroad brings together students from diverse countries. Spending two to three years together on campus creates an amazing opportunity for friendships to flourish. The bonds formed with peers or project teammates can establish strong international networks that extend beyond the completion of your study abroad program. Such networks are incredibly beneficial for forging future business connections.
Cultural Understanding: When we study and live among people from diverse cultures, we encounter different belief systems, religious traditions, and political opinions that may differ greatly from our own. Social behaviors also vary across cultures. For instance, while studying or working abroad, you may discover that speaking loudly or asking questions about someone’s income or marital status could be considered offensive. Learning about these cultural nuances makes us more adept at navigating and appreciating cultural differences. This enhances our cultural understanding and boosts our self-confidence as effective communicators. These qualities are highly valued by recruiters and those seeking reliable business partners.
Self-Awareness: This is a crucial aspect that deserves special attention, as it relates to personal growth. Through the exposure and learning gained from a study abroad experience, your own personality undergoes a transformation. You develop deeper social and cultural understanding and begin to appreciate global perspectives, which in turn enhances your self-awareness. You gain a better understanding of your own viewpoints and strengths.
You can feel homesick from time to time, but, whether you decide to stay abroad or return to your country upon the completion of your education, you are a completely different person than whilst you started your studies.
Last modified: 2023-05-17