If you're asking yourself, 'Should I study abroad?', you're not alone. There are so many reasons why studying abroad can be a life-changing experience. However, you should also ensure that this decision is aligned with your own goals.
Is an international education right for you? If you still need convincing why study abroad programs could we worth it to you, continue reading to learn why study abroad programs can be so important for students.
Student Statistics: Why study abroad?
- 50% want to study abroad to achieve their career goals
- 47% want to study abroad for personal development
- 46% want to study abroad to experience a new culture or lifestyle
- 34% want to study abroad to access higher-quality teaching
Statistics from International Student Survey Insights 2021-2022. Up to three answer options allowed.
1. You’ll become more independent
Whether you’re traveling outside of the country for the first time, or even living alone for the first time, studying abroad pushes you to become more independent and self-sufficient. There are challenges that come with this, but it’s incredibly rewarding in the end! Students often say that studying abroad was a period of huge personal growth for them.
2. You’ll learn about another culture
It doesn’t matter if you’re traveling across ten time zones or just the next country over. Studying abroad exposes you to new people, a new way of life, and a new culture. Our society is more global than ever, and these experiences will expose you to different types of people that will make you a better employee, student, and person overall.
3. You’ll stand out to future employers
You’ll gain valuable skills studying abroad, and employers will take notice. You’ll be a stronger communicator, have better interpersonal skills, and gain intelligence that will help you think critically, no matter your profession. With internships and work opportunities as an international student abroad, your resume will outshine the competition at home and abroad.
4. You’ll broaden your education
Let's say you’re an archeology student. Studying in a country where you can actually go on-site to ancient ruins will be so incredibly valuable. No matter the field you’re in, studying abroad will simply expose you to new paths to pursue your passions, or even investigate new ones. The world has so many outstanding universities – so look beyond your current school and explore the possibilities.
5. You’ll learn more about yourself
When you remove yourself from an environment you feel comfortable in, you should expect a lot of personal growth to happen. It’s not always easy to leave your home city and move to a completely new environment. But stepping outside of your comfort zone can be truly invigorating. Even in the most stressful moments of homesickness, language barriers, and dealing with foreign currency, you’ll learn to rise to the occasion and find out what you’re truly made of!
Need to know how to study abroad in a specific country?
Use our country guides to get the information you need.
6. You’ll gain valuable travel skills
Traveling well is indeed a skill, and it’s one that all global citizens should have. Understanding and eventually mastering how to get around a new city will make you more confident in your everyday life, and possibly even more eager to explore new areas! While there are plenty of apps you can use to help you find your way, you will still develop a new skill set that will follow you back home.
7. You’ll expand your network
Studying abroad is a great way to build friendships. It can be scary to make new friends, but it’s so rewarding. You may realize you have so much in common with someone who lives in a different country. Whether or not you’re bonding with someone else from your country who is on the trip with you, or making friends with a local, expanding your network is great for your social life, your career, and your own growth. And with friends abroad, you’ll always have an excuse to go back!
8. You’ll immerse yourself in a new language
Learning a new language can be an exciting experience, especially if it’s been years since you've studied one in school. Even if you’re just learning the basics, you’re still exercising a part of your brain. And going to a country where they speak the same language as you is still a fascinating experience – you’ll learn new slang and speech patterns, and see your own language through totally different eyes.
9. You’ll go on new adventures
You don’t even need to hike a mountain to go on a study abroad adventure – trying a new food might be adventure enough. But you’re still exposing yourself to new things you wouldn’t be able to expose yourself to at home. And while you can (and certainly should!) take pictures for Instagram and your friends back home, you’ll probably be so wrapped up in these new experiences that you’ll put your phone down and just enjoy.
10. You’ll bring all of these new skills home with you
Coming home after a semester (or years) abroad can bring forward all sorts of emotions. Reverse culture shock is real! But those emotions mean you’ve changed, and have likely brought a lot of skills back with you. You might even realize how much you’ve missed your home country, and gain a new appreciation for it.
How to Study Abroad Guide: Overview
We know it's difficult to get started. In this guide, we’ll explain how to study abroad in full, from how to pick a program to how to bounce back from homesickness, and everything in between!
What Can I Study Abroad?
Wondering about what you can study abroad? This section of the How to Study Abroad Guide will talk about the different kinds of degrees and programs you can study overseas.
Preparing For Study Abroad
Now that you have chosen a program and received your acceptance, where do you go from there? Discover more about housing, budgeting, and packing for your overseas travels in this section of the guide.
What to Do When You Arrive
Do you have your ticket abroad but need to know what to do on arrival? Learn how to navigate your first few days in a new country and also what to expect as you are adjusting to a new culture and society.
After Study Abroad
So, you have had an incredible adventure and are looking at your options after your time is up? We have some ideas for you. Find out more about how to put study abroad on your resume, and what to do if you want to stay in your study abroad country.