College is a special time during which you make special memories that will stay with you forever. However, it isn’t just about making memories, it is about gaining an education. At the end of the day, you are in college to learn. You will need to make very grownup choices that will impact your entire future, so it is important to make those choices carefully. But, at the same time, there’s nothing stopping you from having your cake and eat it – study and build those memories. One of the best ways to do that is through summer study abroad programs.
What Are Summer Study Abroad Programs?
An increasing number of students are becoming interested in spending a summer abroad. Some even go for an entire year! These programs give them the opportunity to get the best of all worlds, including:
- A world class education – literally.
- The chance to see the world.
- The chance to meet new people and experience new cultures.
- The opportunity to have a real world global application to their degree program.
Some of it is about fun. After all, you wouldn’t go halfway around the world, during summer, only to sit in a library every day. But these programs are an opportunity to actually benefit from that fun as well. And when you come back, you will know more than ever before and actually be a better person for your experience. And the icing on the cake is that it will look good on your resume as well.
In the past, the only students who would take part in these types of programs were language students. They would go to a different country to immerse themselves in the language of that country, believed to be the best way to learn. Today, however, many students have the opportunity to go abroad, even if they are not language students. Many degree programs are now offer in English, and English speaking countries such as the Australia, Hong Kong, Great Britain, and Ireland are popular locations for exchange programs of this kind.
It is important to properly plan for your summer abroad, however. You need to know where you will live, how you will finance yourself, how to get around, which school to go to, and more. You also have to make sure that the credits you earn by studying can count towards your degree at home, if that is what you aim to do. There are lots of little details to plan, such as needing a student visa, inoculations, emergency contacts, and more.
Last but not least, you have to be realistic. While studying abroad is going to be a lot of fun, it is not a vacation. You are there to learn and to have an experience. If you can commit to that, having fun in a responsible manner, then you will truly grow as a person as well as learning important skills that will serve you well for the rest of your life.