Traveling is such a magical opportunity, which is why there are so many reasons to study abroad during your scholastic years! Studying abroad can be one of the most life-changing experiences ever. The biggest reasons to study abroad are to invite new things into your life. Here are some of the most wonderful reasons!
1. Experience a New Culture
Immersing yourself into a new culture is one of the most wonderful reasons to study abroad! There is so much to learn from other cultures’ foods, music, arts, and languages and it is a great privilege to experience it all up close and personal. When I studied abroad in Luxembourg two summers ago I had the most amazing journey getting to know the people as well as their way of living.
2. Learn a New Language
Forget about your Spanish class from high school that kept you confined to four walls with a handful of other students – studying abroad will give you the opportunity to learn a new language from the natives themselves. Not to mention any cute tour guides who can teach you a thing or two!
3. Meet New Friends
Studying abroad will place you in a situation that may be foreign in itself before even leaving the states: not knowing people who will be accompanying you on your trip. I can assure you that you will meet some of the most amazing people on your journey and you will become so close with the people who go on the trip with you. The group that I went to Luxembourg with gave me the chance to meet some of my best friends and I would have never met them had I not studied abroad.
4. Meet a Potential Significant Other
Meeting a new boyfriend can certainly be a plus, right? What if it happened to you? I met a boy on my trip and it was one of the most magical relationships I’ve ever had. We got to travel to France and Germany together and then he even came to visit me in the states later in the summer! Although our relationship was short term, I’ve heard of many cases where people meet their future spouses studying abroad! Either way, meeting a potential significant other (whether for a short while or long term) will be life-changing and special!
5. Develop Skills outside the Classroom
Sitting in a classroom will never teach you how to interact with new people, how to overcome difficult situations, how to jump into an opportunity, or how to problem solve with a group of people. Sure, you learn how to do these things through group projects and school activities, but the lessons you will learn do not compare to the lessons learned overseas. The biggest lesson learned is how to adapt!
6. Learn More about Yourself
Maybe you’ve been sheltered growing up or maybe you never really got involved around campus. Studying abroad will give you a chance to find out more about yourself as well as give you a chance to reinvent yourself. I did not for a second think I would be able to take care of myself in a different country without having the support of my core group of friends, family, and professors. I learned the most powerful and important thing about myself: I am adaptable and a mature adult! It felt great coming back and seeing how much stronger I became.
7. Increased Employment Opportunities
According to a study, only 4% of United States undergraduates study abroad. Considering the fact that America is becoming more globalized, it would only make sense to take strong hold of the opportunity to study abroad in order to make yourself a more powerful asset to a future employer. The experience of studying abroad proves to a future employer that you are: independent, self-motivated, willing to embrace challenges, and able to cope and deal with problems.
8. Gives You a New Perspective
Having the opportunity to meet all of these new people and immerse yourself into a new culture will ultimately give you a new perspective. Maybe you find that you like the way other cultures practice their religion or eat their food or handle a business problem. Each country is unique and special in its own way and although America is one of the greatest countries to live in, studying abroad may open your eyes and mind to a whole new lifestyle you will want to embrace…or even move to!
9. Gain Additional Knowledge in Your Major
The reason for studying abroad is of course to gain outside classroom lessons but also to gain additional knowledge in your major. The two classes I took in Luxembourg were business classes: one was finance related and the other was general business related. It was amazing to learn about the European economy and then see firsthand the things we talked about in class out on field trips.
No matter what country you travel to, you will no doubt learn and experience more than you could ever have imagined! Where would you love to study abroad?