During your second year at UK universities you’re faced with three options for your third year: continue onto your final year at uni, spend a year working in your industry, or uproot your life and move to another country to study abroad.
I was fortunate enough to spend a year studying abroad in America, and it was one of the best years of my life. Here’s 10 reasons why you should study abroad.
- Studying abroad gives you the option to live somewhere you’d never normally get the chance to. I’ve lived in a city all of my life and had never seen proper snow before moving to a tiny town in northern Arizona where it regularly snowed above knee height.
- Since you’re studying you get a chance to spend your university holidays travelling, unlike a job where you only get a set amount of days off a year (UK average is 21 days).
- If you’re studying abroad in Europe train travel is cheap as chips.
- You can visit your friends from home who’re studying abroad.
2. GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE
What better way to get out of your comfort zone than to move to the other side of the world and be faced with new languages, people, cultures, laws,
3. ONCE IN A LIFE TIME OPPORTUNITIES
When living abroad you get to participate in local events and festivals. I lived abroad in the US during the 2016 Presidential Election and got the chance to go to rallies and see how the election rolled out firsthand.
4. MAKE INTERNATIONAL FRIENDS
When you study abroad you make friends from around the world. After your year abroad finishes you’ll have a place to stay around the world! It’s pretty great to have people who’re awake (due to time differences) when you’re having a meltdown at 3am.
Another perk of making friends from around the world is you can meet up in different countries in the middle of you. Last year I met up with one of my friends in Sweden & each year I’ve had two Americans stay with me. I love showing them around my town and showing them what my normal life is like.
5. GET TO TAKE DIFFERENT CLASSES
Often universities will require you to take one third cultural modules related to your host country. At my university I could take classes I would never have the opportunity to take at my home university like skiing & snowboarding classes, backpacking, language, history, & politics classes.
6. FIGURE OUT WHO YOU ARE
Now I don’t mean find yourself on a gap yahh but you do realise what you really value. Moving abroad is a crash course in growing up, meeting new people and experiencing new cultures helps you to mature and grow into a more rounded person.
7. LEARN A NEW LANGUAGE
Moving abroad throws you into the deep end with languages. Living in a country is very different to weekly french classes or the occasional 10 minutes on DuoLingo. You don’t have a choice, you have to learn the language to survive.
8.EMPLOYERS LOVE IT
In interviews I’ve been asked more about my year abroad, than I have with my work history. Here’s a list of just SOME of the skills you develop on your year abroad;
- Cultural awareness
- Planning & Organisation
9. EXPERIENCE NEW CULTURES
Meeting new people and living in another country really immerses you in the culture. You can try new foods, learn new traditions, participate in local festivals and celebrations, gain a greater understanding of different religions.
10. YOU HAVE YOUR LIFE TO WORK
Once you graduate you’re more than likely to just go straight into a 9 to 5 job, why spend a year in industry doing something you’re going to do for the rest of your life?
When you’re back from your year out do you want to be the guy telling a story about a board meeting or the guy telling a story about hiking through the rainforest.
This is probably the time you’ll have a chance to take time off and travel for a while. It’s a lot harder to leave a job to travel once you’re settled in.
These are just 10 of thousands of reasons to study abroad. Find out more about studying abroad at Top Universities.