5 Reasons Georgetown Students Should Study Abroad

You’re getting a world class education from Georgetown University, one of the nation’s top ranked schools, so why consider leaving to study elsewhere?

1. Now is the time to go.

College provides such a unique experience. For the first time, you get to have true independence without having as many responsibilities that a full-time adult may have. Most people will never have this kind of freedom or appetite for adventure at another time in their lives, so take advantage of the opportunity to travel somewhere new!

2. You can experience new cultures.

There is absolutely nothing like being somewhere completely foreign to you. Studying abroad is an opportunity for cultural immersion, which will help you gain a new perspective on diversity and learn about the value of other cultures. When you study abroad, you will be able to meet new people and make new friends, both from other American schools as well as from the new school you are attending. Having international friends will definitely be an asset in the future, especially if you plan on returning to that country. They can also help you explore the area and encourage you to try new things.

3. There are professional development opportunities.

Studying abroad in a non-English speaking country can help you develop your communication and speaking skills in another language. You can opt to take language classes abroad, but most importantly, you can practice your skills with natives from the area. Immersing yourself in a place that speaks your target language will help you improve tremendously. Enrolling in an international university also allows you to experience another education system, giving you an interesting and unique perspective. Studying abroad also boosts your resume, since employers love to see global experiences and proficiency in other languages.

4. There are personal development opportunities.

Traveling and living completely independently for the first time gives you the chance to not only learn things about yourself, but also about the world. Maybe you’ve never had to figure out how to go through airport security alone, or you’ve never had to communicate with someone who didn’t speak English before. Studying abroad gives you the chance to challenge yourself and learn things outside of the classroom.

5. Studying abroad is life changing

Of course, there is no place like home, but when you return, you may find that you experience reverse culture shock. This is because you have had such an immersive and special experience abroad which has changed your life. You will never forget the experiences you had, the friends you made and the adventures you embarked on. After studying abroad, not only will you be more motivated to try new things and challenge yourself, but you will have plenty of stories to share.

There are many valid concerns about studying abroad. First, it can be expensive to live in another country. If you receive financial aid from Georgetown, it will carry over if you study abroad for a semester. There are also lots of scholarships that specifically provide aid to students who plan on studying abroad. You could also choose to study in countries where the cost of living is more affordable. According to a ValuePenguin study abroad report, Mexico, India and Guatemala are among the cheapest places to study abroad while Singapore, Switzerland and Norway are among the costliest. You should also do research on the area you are studying in and create a budget. What do you anticipate your biggest costs will be? Will you be traveling to other countries during your time abroad?  

Another big concern students have is fear of missing out on opportunities on campus, but a majority of students study abroad during their junior year. Many companies have specific recruiting timelines, so pay attention to the industries that you are interested in working for and plan accordingly. For instance, if you know that you want to work for a bank, and banks recruit in the fall, then you could considering studying abroad during your spring semester. If you are worried about graduating on time or receiving credits, the Office of Global Education and your deans can help you plan out your semesters at Georgetown.

Georgetown also offers year-long and summer programs as well as domestic and international alternative break programs, so there are plenty of options to choose from. No matter what you are looking for in a college experience, you should definitely consider studying abroad!

 

Disclaimer: Nina Cheng is a contributing writer for ValuePenguin.com

Main image credit: hccs.edu