If you think that studying abroad is something you will never be able to do, think again. Shirley explains why you should consider studying overseas and where to get help to organise your trip.
Travelling and studying in a different country is undoubtedly one of the most challenging and fulfilling experiences a student can undertake in their lifetime. By studying abroad, you have an opportunity to gain a degree at one of the many top quality universities overseas and immerse yourself in a new culture. If the allure of exploring a new country and new cultures is not enough, then here are five more reasons you should consider studying abroad.
1. You Have a Chance to Travel the World
As a student abroad, you are at a distinct advantage of having the whole world at your fingertips. The benefits of studying overseas are endless, but the one indisputable advantage is that you are able to experience so many new locations, different cultures and new perspectives.
Once you are overseas you have the chance to travel the country in which you are studying – as well as visit the local neighbouring countries at a far cheaper rate (you don’t have to fly everywhere, because you can also travel by train, trams, busses, boats and many more options.)
“I believe it is a great opportunity to be able to attend a University overseas since there is a lot of exposure and great opportunities to meet and understand different cultures. In terms of the course I chose I was very happy because I am not just limited to one area of work. It’s a very diverse and broad course and is recognised worldwide.”
– Santana Ramajan (Zimbabwean), studied Finance and Business at University of Portsmouth, in the UK, 2015
2. World Class Education and Facilities
By enrolling in a study programme overseas, whether it’s a short course, or a complete degree – you will have the opportunity to experience world class education and education facilities at different universities. Each university has its own experiences waiting for you, traditions to be practiced, and teaching styles for you to explore.
Don’t be put off if you don’t have any contacts overseas. You will quickly make new friends in your university and classes. By studying in a different country you are able to understand the way that education works in different places and learn more skills from the people around you.
“The amenities offered on campus are endless and promote social interaction between students from all walks of life. I met so many quality people who are still close friends.”
– Samantha Kanyama (Zimbabwean), studied Marketing with Fashion at the University of Hertfordshire in UK in 2014
3. Experience New Cultures, Languages, Places and People
Studying overseas allows you to explore a new country and experience different cultures along with their unique languages, foods, and traditions. This means that you have a chance to discover new interests, new places and new cultures all over the world. Studying and working abroad is a wonderful chance for personal development and making lifelong friends from all over the world.
“The biggest benefit of studying overseas for me was the amount of different people and cultures I managed to experience. I have made friends from around the world and was able to experience and work in Australia while I was studying.”
– Nicolaos Eleftheriades (Greek), studied Computer Science at Edith Cowan University in Australia in 2013
4. A Chance to Further Your Education
If you’re considering taking your education a step further, for instance by going into postgraduate studies, then studying abroad is a really good option. Studying abroad shows that you are committed to your education and are willing to pursue new experiences. In addition, receiving a degree from a university abroad also looks great on your postgraduate studies application and to your future employers.
“I personally enjoyed being in the international college in the foundation and first year of my degree course because there were smaller groups of students coming from different countries. It was easier to fit in and adjust to the UK and its culture. My time at the university was very exciting and rewarding.
To overcome my fear of being overseas I joined various activities on the campus. I became the international student rep of the international college, as well as a course representative. I was invited to various management meetings by Portsmouth for my contribution and constant engagement within the university.
I also undertook some part-time work while I was studying, which I felt contributed to interpersonal organisation and personal skills.”
– Santana Ramajan
5. A Diverse Range of Career Opportunities
Studying abroad provides you with the opportunity to work either in another country or return home with a new set of skills and life experiences. Studying abroad looks great on your CV and sets you apart from other applicants who may have studied at a local institution.
“Studying abroad, especially alone, was an experience that not only helped shape who I am but also provided the tools to help me become who I want to be in future. It’s an experience that never stops inspiring, and being back home in Zimbabwe has also made me realise that it’s an experience and exposure that has also, at times, pushed me to demand and pursue a higher standard of life.”
– Santana Ramajan
So How Can You Get Started?
If you’ve been convinced to consider studying abroad, but are daunted by all the paperwork, applications and places to go then one of the easiest ways you can get help is to turn to organisations that specialise in exactly these processes.
In the famous words of Lao Tzu,
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
Don’t be scared to reach out for help to make those first steps happen. From there you are free to go wherever you want.