People who go to college, university, or another form of higher education often say that it is a completely life-changing experience. From their actual course to the people they meet, there's a world full of possibilities out there for us to explore. When we say the world, we mean it, too.
A lot of colleges offer students the chance to study abroad, more often than not for one whole semester. It isn't everyone's cup of tea, but, if it's something that you've considered in the past or may come around to, we're here to let you know why it'd be one of the best decisions you've ever made.
Everyone has their own pros and cons with their college or university, and most of the time, you’ve just got to roll with the punches. However, if you want a fresh change of pace, then heading for a semester abroad could be precisely what you need.
It just gets you out of the environment you’re in and allows you to gain some perspective on your current way of living. We’re not saying that it’ll fix all of your remaining issues back home, but, as they so often say, absence makes the heart grow fonder.
While you may not necessarily be in the process of learning new languages, say, if you’re an American traveling over to England to study. However, you’ll certainly be learning a new way of ‘letting your voice be heard’ so to speak.
If you do fancy learning a new language, though, there are plenty of places for you to go in order to do that. Either way, you’re being thrown in at the deep end in a way of life that you previously wouldn’t have been all that familiar with, and it’s pretty exciting.
The word ‘abroad’ kind of gives this one away a little bit, but, yeah, you’ll get to travel to somewhere that you may never have been before.
Then, when you’re in your chosen country, you can start to look into the possibility of going to other cities and towns, whether they’re in the same region as you or hundreds of miles away. We believe that we were put on this planet to make a difference, and one way of doing that is expanding your horizons and exploring another part of the world.
While some people test out different courses to their own when they study abroad, 99 times out of 100, they stick to the same one.
Regardless of whether or not you enjoy your course or you hate it, the idea that you can start to put together a whole new understanding of what it is you’re studying is actually really exciting.
Different countries will study subjects in different ways and that isn’t exactly rocket science, but it could really improve your chances of getting a strong degree or a better grade.
You may be adventurous with your taste buds or you may prefer to stick to what you know, but, one way or another, you’ll be forced to mix things up when you head abroad.
It will open your mind up to tastes that you may never have even known existed, and, while food isn’t exactly the most important thing on the planet to some people, it’s certainly an interesting part of the day to day life. Just make sure you know what you are and are not allergic to before heading out there, as communication can be tricky.
Relationships, be it in the romantic sense or in a friendship sense, are complicated. They’re especially complicated if they’re with people that you’ve known for years and years on end.
However, when you’re on your semester abroad, you can become friends with and potentially even fall in love with someone that you otherwise would never have known.
Fate is a funny thing, and not everyone believes in it, but, every now and then, it gives you the chance to be someone you’ve always wanted to be—which, interestingly enough, leads us onto our next point.
Just because you act a certain way or may have behaved in a certain manner at your original university doesn’t mean you need to do so on this trip. We aren’t saying that you should change your personality entirely, but, if there are aspects of your life and your persona that you’ve always wanted to try and improve, this is the perfect opportunity for you to do so.
It’s the kind of fresh start that a lot of people dream about but never quite get the chance to try out for themselves, so make sure you seize it!
Half of the people who go to college in the first place are nowhere near the kind of maturity levels that they should be at by their late teens/early twenties, and that much is just a fact.
Being given so much freedom can either make or break a person, but, when you’re abroad, you’re all on your own—to start off with, at least. You are forced to mature in an incredibly short space of time because, if you don’t, then you’ll be a fish out of water in a foreign land.
Every culture is different and unique, and, while it’s easy to ridicule or question it from afar, it becomes a very different ballgame when you’re up close and personal with it all.
Some traditions and ways of life are a little bit different to others, but you’ll never know which parts you want to implement into your own life unless you give them a try.
It’s always nice to have a nice grasp on culture, because then, when you return to your original college, you’ll have a lot of pretty cool stories to tell your pals.
P.S: yes, of course, drinking culture counts.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s sewing, ultimate Frisbee, or going down to the local 100,000 seater stadium in order to watch a game of football, a hobby is a hobby, and we all have them—even if you don’t even know it.
Whether it’s because you didn’t have the time back home or you just didn’t give it a second thought, none of that matters once you’re on your semester abroad. You are picked up and placed into scenarios that will give you a great grasp of what it is you actually enjoy doing in your spare time.