You have been thinking of studying abroad but are not sure whether it's something for you? If you ask anybody who has studied abroad, he or she will probably tell you that it is a life-changing experience and one of the most rewarding things he or she has ever done. Perhaps getting an overview of what you can learn from studying abroad can help you make your decision.
Opportunity to find friends for a lifetime: While studying abroad, you will not only meet a new culture, but also other international students who are far from home and looking for friends from abroad, like you are. This situation creates an excellent opportunity to build new and long-lasting friendships.
Opportunity to learn a language: There is no better and more effective way to learn a language than to study in a country in which the language you would like to acquire is spoken. You will probably find learning the language very easy if you are surrounded by it.
Opportunity to widen your horizon: When you are studying abroad, you will learn things about the world that you could not have learned at home. Some months after you have returned home, you will understand the world in a much wider perspective and see it in a different way from what you thought to be possible.
Opportunity to get to know other cultures: Cultural differences are more than just differences in language, food or habits. The real differences come from somewhere beyond the immediately visible, and influence the way of understanding the world. You cannot understand it from reading a book or watching a TV show. Only if you have been in a foreign country for a longer period of time you can truly understand another culture.
Opportunity to learn about yourself: When you have studied abroad, you will return home with new ideas and perspectives about yourself and your own culture. The experience of studying abroad challenges you to reconsider your current beliefs and values, alter or strengthen them.
Opportunity to travel: Study breaks and weekends let you travel and get to know the country you are studying in. Since the studies can take place in a country completely different from your homeland, you are much closer to places you might otherwise not have had the opportunity to visit. You can organize a journey with your friends or find that somebody else, for example the students union or the university itself that organizes an interesting trip.
Opportunity to gain life experience: Being in an absolutely new environment can sometimes be scary but also very exciting. You will encounter situations that are absolutely new to you. It is an excellent possibility to learn to adapt and respond in efficient ways, discover new strengths and abilities, conquer challenges, and solve problems. These are skills that you will probably find most useful in your life.
Opportunity to study precisely what you are interested in: Studying abroad can give you study choices you would never have had at your national universities.
Opportunity to learn in a different way than you have been used to: While studying abroad you may become familiar with an entirely new way of teaching or learning. Studying abroad is likely to differ a lot from what you are used to in your school. It can be very useful to try other ways of teaching or learning as this helps to understand that there can be several ways of doing something.
Opportunity to acquire your dream job: Did you know that less than 5% of people study abroad during their life? At the same time, the world continues to become more globalised. Companies from countries around the world continue to invest in other countries, building a need for people who are able to manage in different cultures. Through the employer's eyes, a person who has studied abroad is independent, self-motivated, willing to pick up challenges, and able to cope with diverse problems and situations. Your experience of living and studying in a foreign country, getting to know other cultures, and learning another language can give you advantages in acquiring your dream job.
In short, why study abroad?