“Sooner or later, I need to begin to do what any candidate does in a presidential race; I need to begin to win.”
- Lamar Alexander
If you’re reading this post, you have more likely decided that studying abroad may be beneficial for you.
But before you start rushing to hand in school applications and acquire transcripts, an assessment of one’s eligibility and a consideration of what it takes to be studying abroad are in order.
No, I am not necessarily talking about having awe-inspiring intellectual prowess. Being a genius is not the primary qualification here; but rather, the willingness to accept change, to risk and to put in the work necessary to achieve one’s academic goals.
The question you have to ask yourself before you start putting money into your academic campaign is…”Are you an ideal candidate for a scholastic career abroad?”
A. Your comfort level…
* Am I open to change?
* Do I like taking risks?
* Am I uncomfortable in unfamiliar territories and situations?
* How do I usually deal with the new and unfamiliar?
* Am I willing to leave my family, friends and comfort zone behind?
B. Your academic career and interest…
* Am I ‘academically fit’ to pursue an education abroad?
* Do I know what field I am going to pursue abroad?
* Do I have an inkling as to what schools and/or universities I plan on going to?
* Do I know what kind of program I want to enroll in and for how long am I planning to be staying abroad?
C. Your means and advantages…
* Do I have a passport?
* Have I ever travelled abroad?
* Am I familiar with the country I am going to? Have I been there before?
* Do I have friends, family or a support system in my country of choice?
* Do I know how to speak the native language of the country I am choosing to go to?
* Am I financially capable or do I have financial backing (such as, parents’ aid or scholarships) to pursue an education abroad?
* Do I have a financial plan in order to support myself while I am away from home?
These questions may give you a clearer understanding of where you currently stand as a candidate to becoming a student abroad.
However, though some of these questions may stun you into numbness, you need not worry. An ideal candidate is not only someone who has answered ‘yes’ to all the right questions; but rather, the ideal candidate can also be one who is willing to transcend the seeming barriers.
As I’ve said, the ideal candidate for an education abroad is willing to accept change, to risk, and - most importantly - to put in the work necessary to achieve his or her academic goals.
So, if you’re ready to accept change, to risk and to put in the work - let’s head off to the campaign trail to drop off your name in the ballot box.
ORIGINAL ARTICLE SOURCE: http://studyabroad.gbwatch.com/studying-abroad/7.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/