If you’re considering studying abroad, your decision could lead to one of the best career moves you’ll ever make. It’s not for everyone – but if you’re inclined to leave your home country for at least a term or as long as several years, a lot of evidence shows your prospects will greatly improve.
A recent British Council study found that one-third of adults who had not spent time living or studying abroad felt it harmed their careers. And 54% felt a lack of international experience was holding them back.
Employers, particularly those that operate internationally, are increasingly looking for candidates who lived and/or studied abroad. These employers associate studying abroad with a list of attributes they’re looking for: independence, an understanding of foreign cultures, an international outlook and an ability to operate in different environments and to adapt to initially unfamiliar surroundings.
Studying abroad helps differentiate you from other job applicants and can give you an edge. It also offers the opportunity to work where you’ve studied once you complete your degree.
You may also find university options in your home country are limited. Depending on what you study, there’s a good chance a university abroad offers better programmes in the field you want to pursue. This has clear advantages: you can learn more, become better qualified and open the door to more opportunities.
Going to university abroad is not just about studying. Overseas universities offer students a wide range of opportunities. You can take part in an academic exchange and study at a partner university for a term or a full year. You can do an internship, join a voluntary project, student club or society or do a leadership programme.
For many students, a key motivation is the adventure. The opportunity to study and live in another country and to travel is a lasting, life-changing experience. It presents exciting challenges and the chance to make friends from all over the world. Many international students consider the time they spent abroad one of the best things they’ve ever done.
All the best in your studies wherever they may take you.