Studying abroad is an instantly rewarding experience, but the benefits also carry on into your professional life. Having studied abroad during your undergraduate or graduate degree is an attractive qualification in the eyes of future employers. To learn more about why your future employer will care about your study abroad experience, continue reading this EDUopinions article!
What skills does studying abroad give you?
Studying abroad can leave you with a plethora of valuable personal and professional skills. Typically, one of the most important takeaways of a study abroad experience is intercultural communication and awareness. Living, studying and working in another country is the best way to immerse yourself in another way of life and learn about cultural differences.
In addition, study abroad programmes teach students problem-solving, courage and leadership. Moving to a new country, especially if you are learning the language, can be quite challenging at times. But this challenge is exactly what helps you grow and learn to find creative solutions to new problems.
How will study abroad affect your future career path?
Study abroad may affect your future career path in a multitude of ways. For starters, studying abroad is likely to introduce you to new industries, sectors, languages or people. This experience in itself may help you decide what sort of career you would like to pursue.
If you already know where you’re heading, studying abroad can still affect your career path. Having international experience is a highly desirable quality in today’s economy, meaning you may earn more, have access to more opportunities or even move to another country for work!
How to choose the right place to study abroad?
Choosing the right place to study abroad can be a complex decision. The best way to go about the process is to decide what you want to learn and where you can do that. Of course, this is easier said than done, with many other factors to take into consideration, including costs, visas, timing, personal and career goals.
For more information on how to choose the right place to study abroad, be sure to check out our Student Advice or our articles for everything you need to know. To get started, take a look at the A to Z of Studying Abroad or How to Pick a Country When Thinking of Studying Abroad!
Which countries are best to study and work?
It’s hard to say any single country is the best place to study or work. Which country is best for you depends on your own personal, academic and career goals. That said, there are some trends that may help guide you in the right direction. For example, France is known around the world for its excellent business schools. For more information, check out this article on the 13 Best Business Schools in France. Another popular place to study abroad is the Netherlands because of the relatively low tuitions fees and the widespread availability of degrees in English. To learn more, check out EDUopinions’ list of the 10 best countries to study in Europe.
5 Reasons Why Your Future Employer Will Care about your Studied Abroad:
Studying abroad demonstrates commitment and motivation
First up on EDUopinions’ list of 5 reasons why your future employer will care about your study abroad is that such an experience demonstrates your commitment and motivation. Embarking on a study abroad programme isn’t as simple as signing up. Most often, students must submit an application and go through interviews, not to mention all the administrative aspects like budgeting, visas, finding accommodation, etc.
Having studied abroad demonstrates to future employers that if you set your mind to something, you are able to achieve it. This quality is obviously important in a professional context too, which is why so many employers seek out recruits who have studied abroad.
Studying abroad teaches you cultural awareness
Next, another important take-away from study abroad experiences is a sense of cultural awareness. Those who undertake studies in a foreign country develop a deep knowledge of their host culture, which also allows them to reflect on their own culture and understand differences between them.
Of course, studying abroad in Spain doesn’t mean you will develop a deep understanding of all European countries and cultures. Rather, learning about and immersing yourself in just one foreign country can help broaden your horizons in general. This is an essential quality for modern professionals, as today’s business world is more globalised than ever. For this reason alone, employers will care about your study abroad experience.
Studying abroad expands your network
One of the more social aspects of studying abroad, meeting new people can be both personally and professionally enriching. Meeting new people in a new place is one of the best ways to feel at home there. Moreover, staying in touch with those people may lead to a long-lasting friendship as well as career opportunities later in life.
Now, this is not to say you should go into your study abroad experience searching for potential business partners. Rather, the relationships you build with friends and classmates during your time abroad will stay with you for life, extending your network of contacts across the world. For future employers, this demonstrates a sense of global citizenship, which is another important quality to have in today’s business world.
Studying abroad makes you independent and self-sufficient
Another reason why your future employer will care about your study abroad is that this type of experience is formative in terms of your independence and self-sufficiency. As mentioned above, there are many moving parts involved in a study abroad experience. Part of what makes it so formative is that you often have to shoulder these challenges alone or at least without your normal support network at your home institution.
Establishing a life for yourself in a foreign country takes a great deal of independence, self-motivation and confidence. For this reason, employers are keen to hire recruits who have studied abroad. Such an experience demonstrates a person’s ability to thrive on their own, learn in a new environment and take smart risks.
Studying abroad demonstrates risk-taking
Following the point above, risk-taking is another quality sought out in recruits and another reason why your future employer will care about your study abroad. It’s possible that not enough credit is given to students for taking a risk like moving to another country to study. As we have explained, moving abroad is not necessarily for the faint of heart. If you are a person who commits to studying abroad, this decision demonstrates to future employers that you are a smart, detail-oriented risk-taker.
Being a risk-taker may not seem like the best quality to have when applying to jobs. However, being willing to take smart risks shows your potential for personal, academic and professional development. It tells employers, “I set goals for myself and I’m not afraid to fail as long as I learn something from the experience.” This take-away from study abroad is perhaps the most under-rated, but by no means the least important.
Why Your Future Employer Will Care about Your Study Abroad: Conclusions
As we’ve discussed above, studying abroad can be a highly enriching experience for many reasons. Personal and academic growth are among the most obvious take-aways from studying abroad, but such an experience can also benefit you professionally down the line.
We at EDUopinions hope you’ve found this article interesting and helpful. If you have any questions about studying abroad, be sure to reach out to one of our personal advisors for help with anything related to your student experience!