In the whole story of your life, going to university is just a few years of transition. It is a period in which you stop being your parents’ child and become your own adult. It is only with a perspective that you see it as a transition because at the time it is your only focus.
This is when you find out who you are. One way in which you can do that is to get your degree in another country. What would studying abroad do for you?
- A different education system
They teach things differently elsewhere. For a start you specialize immediately. Usually, there’s no first year of general education so you get your bachelor’s in three years, not four.
- You get to improve your language skills
Even if you’re not a language student, you already know there’s more to the world than the English language. The ability to speak something else will put you in good standing forever.
- Technology makes things easier
Moving away from home always requires some adjustment. Some students are immediately at home, others take a while to settle down. But with the internet providing us immediate connection it is easy to keep in touch and with Skype and Facetime, it doesn’t even cost.
You might be a bit homesick, but you will get over it, and then…
- Europe is relatively small
Fifty-four point something per cent of students go to Europe and, comparatively, it is a small place.
If you’re at university in London you can catch a train to almost anywhere. You can be in Paris in a little over two hours. It will take you 15 hours or so to get to Rome, but on the way, you get to see France and Switzerland. If you book far enough in advance a round trip will be just about $100. If you can afford to fly, it is faster to get to Rome from London than it is to get from the east to the west coast.
If your goal is to see as much of the world as you can while studying, being in Europe provides a lot of opportunities.
- All those European counties are really different
It’s not like the difference between North and South Dakota. The French and the Spanish share a border but they are totally different. You will see more than one culture – you will see dozens.
- This looks really good on your resume
Living and studying abroad demonstrates that you did grow up. You have a proven level of resilience and self-reliance which makes your resume stand out. You show adaptability and a level of maturity beyond that of people who have not travelled.
Other cultures change you. They open your eyes to other ways of doing things and other ways of seeing the world. Possibly the best part is that you’ll have a really good time finding out who you are.