See the World – The biggest reason many students first consider a study abroad program is the opportunity to see the world. It’s a great way to experience a country you’ve always wanted to visit, and travel to other countries might also be possible – from almost anywhere in Europe can travel easily to many other countries.
Education – Studying abroad is also about experiencing different styles of education, and maybe getting a different, more global perspective on your program of study. Immersing yourself in the education system of the host country is also a great way to experience and understand the people, its traditions, and its culture. The educational experience should your primary focus of a study abroad experience, so choosing the right school is important.
Personal Development – For many students, studying abroad would be their first experience living away from home, which is why so many students actually don’t follow through. When it comes to personal development, there is nothing like being on your own in a foreign country. It can be overwhelming and can test your ability to adapt to diverse situations and solve problems, but it also builds confidence and independence in a way you can’t do living at home!
Experience a New Culture – Discovering yourself while experiencing new foods and customs and learning to understand a different culture can give you a better understanding and appreciation for the people and history of whatever part of the world you are exploring.
Language Skills – Most study abroad host universities offer their courses in English, but you also have an opportunity to learn a foreign language by immersing yourself in it. There’s no better way to learn than to dive right in and practice a new language in your day to day life, and you can also find language courses that give you more formal training.
Expand Career Opportunities – A more global perspective on culture, language skills, a great education, and a willingness to learn are all very attractive to future employers, and some students even find they loved their host country so much they plan to go back.
Make Lifelong Friends – One of the biggest benefits is the opportunity to make friends from different backgrounds and countries, and it’s important to stay in contact with your new international friends. In addition to rewarding personal relationships, these friends can also be important networking tools later down the road.
Graduate School Admissions – Like future employers, graduate school admissions may look very highly on your study abroad experience as proof of your commitment to education and diversity, and that you aren’t afraid to seek out new challenges or manage difficult situations.
Life Experience – For some, this may be the only opportunity to travel abroad for a long period of time. Assuming your post-secondary education leads to a job and a career, your next opportunity to travel abroad may be years away so take advantage of opportunity to travel the world with no commitments but to study and learn about new cultures. Studying abroad is an experience unlike any other.