It’s currently International Exchange Week here at NTU and if you’re lucky enough to have the option of a study abroad or an exchange semester as part of your degree here are ten reasons why you should consider this opportunity.
It’s excuse to travel. Not only within your chosen destination but also the surrounding region and even nearby countries. Whether you’re in California or Prague, there are always options to travel on your time abroad. You will be surrounded by people from all over the world who will be looking to do the same thing.
New culture. This is true even in English speaking countries like America and Australia.
New friends. You will meet so many new people and you will make lifelong friends not only in the country you study in, but from all over the world.
Job opportunities. Not only are employers are drawn to people who have studied abroad, but you could also make some links and connections in the country you study in, and who knows you could move back once you graduate.
Make a new city home. You may have already done this when moving to university but your study abroad city/town will also become your new home. When you’re there for an extended period, even if it’s just a semester you get to know the place like a local.
Different university experience. University is different wherever you go, but abroad it can be a completely different experience. Adapting to a new system is challenging at first, but you’ll find it makes you a better-rounded student. Just remember although it is tempting to relax and almost switch off from university work, remember why you’re there. Particularly if your time abroad counts towards your degree!
You push yourself out of your comfort zone. Its scary and daunting at first but it will be the best learning curve and by the end you will wonder why you had so many doubts.
Learn from people all over the world. You will meet some fascinating and colourful people on your study abroad programme.
Personal growth. You probably will change; embrace it, its all part of the fun.
Memories. When you get back home you will undoubtedly have great memories, and excellent stories to tell.
Shara Samra – Deputy Lifestyle Editor