No need to put your education or your work experience on hold to travel – you can do both! Both studying and taking an internship abroad will allow you to combine learning (‘on the job’ learning in the case of an internship) with the experiential learning of travelling, assimilating into a different culture and making connections with new colleagues and friends. Here are five great benefits:
You Will Meet a Diverse Group of People
Travelling provides the opportunity to explore different ways of life, and meet people who have had a wide range of experiences. Studying or taking an internship abroad will give you an opportunity to meet locals, and probably people from many other countries as well. Not only does this mean you will have a long list of countries to visit in the future, it also means you get to encounter different attitudes towards business, money and relationships, giving you a different perspective to life.
You Will Have the Opportunity to Network
Considering that business now takes place on an international playing field, making connections within your field and exploring the ways that they practice your discipline, is highly valuable and could open up exciting career possibilities.
You Will Set Yourself Apart to Employers
Alongside the benefits of expanding your networking circle, the experience of studying or taking an internship abroad can make you stand out to employers in an increasingly saturated graduate labour market. The experience of an internship abroad demonstrates your adaptability, communication skills and ability to solve problems and overcome cultural and language barriers.
You will Grow as a Person
From learning a new bus schedule to finding supermarket brands that you like, moving abroad means starting from scratch. This is especially true in a non-English speaking country, if you don’t speak the language (by the way, universities in many non-English speaking countries now offer degree programs in English). The challenge of adapting to a new culture will help you grow independence and confidence. These are skills that will not only differentiate you from your peers, but will also be helpful in all areas of your life and will affect you positively for years to come.
You Will Have Fun
Travelling is fun; having the opportunity to make new friends, sample local cuisine and try new sports are some of the things to enjoy about living abroad. Whether you find yourself hiking the Inca trail, lion-spotting in the Serengeti, or wandering around the Jardin du Luxenbourg, you will come home with invaluable memories and lots of stories to tell!
If you want to find out how you can study or intern abroad, visit the Study and Go Abroad Fair and Graduate School Fair in Vancouver, Montreal and Toronto in March.