Do you have dreams of traveling to far away lands? It’s easier than it seems to make those dreams a reality. I had always wanted to study fashion in Europe, and I just spent my Spring Quarter in London doing just that. Almost every student that has studied abroad will tell you it is a life-changing experience. Here are just a few of the benefits you can gain:
1) Expose yourself to a new culture. While studying abroad, you will become completely immersed in a new culture. This provides the opportunity to eat new food, learn a different language and observe unique trends. While it’s common to experience culture shock at first, it’s important to take the time to absorb these differences. When I first arrived in London, it took me a while to get used to taking the Tube (underground rail system) everywhere. Once I got accustomed to it, I loved the accessibility of the Tube to get anywhere I wanted to go.
2) Travel. Study abroad opens up increased opportunities for travel just by proximity. Train or plane tickets can be purchased for relatively cheap prices, making travel within the continent fairly simple. Many study abroad programs also offer field trips on the weekends. During my time abroad, I was ecstatic to visit Paris on a holiday weekend.
3) Earn valuable experience. Many employers look favorably on study abroad experience as a means to showcase skills in communication, teamwork and flexibility. Some study abroad programs even offer internship experiences as well to include on your resume. I interned at a fashion retailer’s headquarters while I was in London and I believe this will give me a competitive edge.
4) Make new friends. Studying abroad lets you meet people from all over the world. In addition, the people in your program will most likely be experiencing the same sense of culture shock and excitement. The experiences you have with your classmates will give you a unique bond. My roommates and I explored the Colosseum in Rome together and it brought us closer together.
5) Learn about yourself. This is one of the most frequently stated benefits of study abroad, but it also one of the most important. Studying abroad can allow you to return home with a sense of independence and admiration for the world around you.
For more information, visit asi.csupomona.edu