Studying Abroad Studying abroad has many benefits and can open many doors and possibilities for those who take advantage of the opportunity. I want to have the chance as a college student to study abroad and experience a new culture and open my mind to new experiences and challenges. Although there may be some difficulties studying in a foreign country I believe the advantages are far greater. Studying abroad offers one the chance to learn a new culture by allowing a person to immerse himself in that culture.

A semester or a year abroad gives a person enough time to really learn and become comfortable with another culture. It is enough time for one to become comfortable enough and develop relationships and make friends. These relationships can last one a lifetime. Also, this would be enough time to completely learn a foreign language. True, it can be scary to go to a country and not know the language, but one will be with other students and being totally immersed in the culture it should take no time to learn the language.

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By the end of the experience one can be fluent in another language This is also a good opportunity to learn to be independent. Parents will not be there to fix any problems one might have. It will be up to the student to work things out on their own. This independence can be a true character builder and definitely set one up to be successful after college. One of the most beneficial aspects of studying abroad is the positive affect it will have on the resume. Employers, as well as, Graduate Schools look favorably on an international study experience.

Studying abroad helps students to become more mature, self sufficient and have an international view on subjects. These qualities are all very attractive in the workplace. There are challenges to studying abroad as well. For example, one can experience culture shock which can be overwhelming. However, if prepared for this one can adjust to it. Also, it is important to keep an open mind and to talk to the instructors and other students when an overwhelming feeling starts to present itself. These feelings are natural and expected. Finances can also be a problem to the aspect of studying abroad.

However, if planned for and saving begins early enough financing the study abroad may not be an issue. Also the tuition involved through many of the Universities is not much more expensive than their own tuition. Financial aid and scholarships are also available. The advantages of studying abroad far outweigh the disadvantages. The independence, maturity, and the widening of one’s mind that can be obtained from studying abroad will stay with the student for their entire lives. If given the chance, I believe any student should have the opportunity to have the experience of a lifetime and study abroad.

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Kylie Garcia

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