“Flying may not be all plain sailing, but the fun of it is worth the price.”
- Amelia Earhart
Remember the first time you ever rode an airplane?
The engine started whirring and the rudder stirred into position as you buckled in your seatbelt and faked calm. But as the plane started shifting towards the runway and its wheels slowly lifted from the ground, your stomach suddenly churned uncontrollably and you felt like spewing out the fried chicken you just had for lunch.
You start getting paranoid at the thought of being weightless, of being supported by nothing but invisible air. You suddenly long for solid ground, regretting why you even wanted to defy gravity.
Then, the seemingly chaotic rise ceased. The pilot turned off the seatbelt sign and a sense of calm overwhelmed you. You looked out the window and you saw nothing but blue skies and shape-shifting clouds.
You then realize why you rode an airplane in the first place. You wanted to experience it. You wanted an adventure. You were a traveller, seeking to arrive at a certain destination.
Such is the case in deciding to seek an education abroad.
At this point, you’re more likely leaning towards an international experience but somehow, you need a little bit more convincing to ease your fears and to confirm that this is truly the right decision. You need to know why you’re even attempting this frightening endeavour.
What are the benefits of an education abroad?
Leaving home and the familiar can be a tough decision. And for the tough to get going when the going gets tough, one must know what the silver linings are.
1. Personal growth
An education abroad will promote independence, self-confidence and maturity.
This experience will push you into experiencing the real world.
You may have friends and family backing you up. You may have their support and they may even find ways of being in close proximity to you.
But believe me - this is your fight. This is your experience. This is your adventure. And this will be your success.
And no matter the experience - whether good or bad - you will be the better for it.
By pursuing an education abroad, one becomes not only a university student, but a student of life as well.
2. Enhancement of education
An obvious benefit is growth in your scholarly pursuits.
While education differs from one university to the next; all the more an education back home will vary from an education abroad. And with the experience of something new and different, one’s specialization is reinforced.
One is no longer limited to what is familiar. One becomes educated in the new, the different and expectedly, the more current.
3. Cultural appreciation
When one is able to study abroad, his appreciation for other cultures overpowers ‘cultural toleration.’
Let me explain.
The term ‘toleration’ connotes being able to overcome an ‘annoyance’ of some sort; while ‘appreciation’ encapsulates a sense of celebration of distinction.
A student who pursues an education abroad will inevitably meet people of different races, cultures and religions. Being the ‘outsider,’ he will need to - and more likely, want to - participate in his host country’s culture and his newfound peers’ everday living.
Through this participation, the student will learn to appreciate what is his, what is others’ and what connects and differentiates both.
4. A network of possibilities
Your new peers will be your new contacts and they will open a whole new world of possibilities to you.
Imagine having friends in the Netherlands, in Australia, in Japan, in France and in other areas of the world. Just like you, your new friends are educated and more likely, ambitious. With fantastic educational backgrounds and thirst for success, more often than not, you and your peers will be occupying high positions in your respective fields.
You will be each one’s contact. With each point being as strong as the next, your network of friends will be beneficial for all of you.
5. Career booster
There is nothing more eye-catching in today’s global market than an ‘international experience’ printed out in one’s resume.
Companies appreciate and admire an educational attainment abroad, for this shows the individual’s capacity to adapt to and thrive in global competition.
We are no longer just battling it out at home. Competition has expanded from our own backyards into our neighbors’. And an international degree can mean the difference between being able to compete and settling for last place.
So, are you convinced of the benefits an education abroad can bring?
Buckle up and enjoy the ride! It’s gonna be a doozy!
ORIGINAL ARTICLE SOURCE: http://studyabroad.gbwatch.com/studying-abroad/6.html
About the Author: Graduating in 2004 from Ateneo de Manila with a major in AB Communication and a minor in AB History, Nikki Alfonso lives for the written word. Her passion for writing began with a poem she composed about an elephant and a red rubber ball when she was 7 years old. From then on, she became fixated with words, using them to move readers, to expressively get her message across and to make up stories with her friends about imaginary rendezvous with matinee idols and boy bands. She had her first taste of being a salaried writer in January 2004 when she began writing for Eversun Software Corporation. Prompted by the need to find a job after graduation, her love of putting pen to paper and entertainment, she decided to take on a full-time job in television as a creative staff member and writer wherein she would be paid for daydreaming and telling stories. Wanting to give back to a cause close to her heart, she also writes for JADE -- an online magazine seeking to showcase English-speaking Asian women as intelligent and well-accomplished movers and shakers in their respective fields. Nikki believes that in order for one to be truly called a writer, the ability to empathize and the potency to create with heart are pre-requisites. Flunk in those departments and you don't get a diploma.
Read her blog at http://studyabroad.gbwatch.com/