Starting the study abroad process may seem daunting, but we promise that it is the time of your life and you’ll make memories that last a lifetime. Sometimes it can feel like a large chunk of change out of your pocket, but it is worth every penny. Taking out an additional loan to study abroad feels overwhelming, especially when you don’t know what your future income will be. Heck, you probably just declared your major or maybe you are thinking about transferring to a different school. But for now, we want you to put all your worries aside, because we believe that going abroad is worth it and we’ll prove it to you.
#10 Time is on your side now
Plain and simple, college students have the time and graduates do not. Once you graduate with a degree, you’ll start to settle into a career and it can be difficult to find time to travel. In the real world, you will be strapped with a mortgage or car payments. Once you sign the dotted line, a job contract binds you to only two weeks of paid vacation a year. Now is the time to travel and travel a lot, because this is one of the only times in your life that you have so much time to devote to it.
#9 You will gain employable skills
Study abroad will give you the chance to develop skills that many businesses are seeking, especially in today’s global economy. More importantly, if you intern abroad, you can concentrate on learning and refining a specific skill set. Did we mention all the international networking opportunities? If you’re lucky, you might be able to work abroad because international employers will see that you can live in a different country. It’s an experience that most employers look for and most students take for granted.
#8 Full immersion
Study abroad for a summer, semester, or year; it doesn’t matter! The longer you stay, the more immersed you will become in the culture of your chosen country. We’ve found that the longer you stay, the better. It may seem daunting to study for an entire year, but time flies when you’re having fun (we promise, you will be having LOADS of fun.) As an added bonus, there is a special grant for students that choose to study abroad for an entire year.
#7 Live the Vida Local
Choose to travel or tour abroad and you will only be seen as a tourist. Studying abroad gives you the unique chance to live as the locals do. In fact, plenty of students felt they had a second home by the time they left. They became a local and by the end of their semester or year, tourists were asking them for directions, suggestions for local restaurants and nightlife recommendations.
#6 Homestay or student residence halls are WAY better than any hotel
Staying in a hotel keeps you in this foreigner bubble, but staying with a family or in a residence hall allows for complete cultural immersion. You’ll have the chance to live with a family from your chosen country or with other students at your university — either way, it is the best way to get to know locals and other students from all over the world!
#5 Language immersion
When you tour a country, you are forced to learn some basic survival phrases like “hello” and “bathroom.” The best part about studying abroad, especially in a country where you don’t speak the language, is the full language immersion that goes on. The longer you are there, the more you can practice the native tongue and by the end of your program, you’ll be nearly fluent!
#4 Learn a new skill
Whether it is navigating a tricky subway system in Hungary or learning to cook some delicious Spanish paella, studying abroad will teach you some vital skills that you can bring back home with you! Depending on the location, you will be able to learn skills that only the local population can teach you. When you return, you can teach your family and friends everything you’ve learned!
#3 Earn academic credit
Earn college credit and fill in some general electives while having the most amazing experience of your life. With study abroad, you get the unique opportunity to learn inside and outside of the classroom. Inside the classroom, you can learn about the culture and academic structure of your university. Outside the classroom, you will gain valuable life skills like navigating the streets of Florence or riding a llama in Peru.
#2 Friendship and romance like you’ve never known
Studying abroad bonds people for life. Never again will you have a group of people who are just as eager to see the world as you are. Traveling together, engaging in cultural activities together, sharing meals together, and more — you are guaranteed to come home with best friends from all around the globe.
#1 Studying abroad is cheaper than traveling abroad
The cost of spending 10-12 weeks in another country would cost over $14,000 and that would be JUST accommodation alone. Tack on another $500-$1,000 for your flight PLUS $2,700 for food and then some. When you do a cost comparison, you’ll find study and intern abroad programs are more affordable and give you more bang for your buck.
Studying abroad is a short term investment that will give you a lifetime return on investment. Stop by your financial aid office or contact a CISabroad advisor. We guide you towards financial resources that help fund your study abroad dream.
Remember, “You’re Going Places!” with CISabroad! You can count on it. We are here for you every step of the way and we promise to make your study abroad dream a reality.