Studying abroad is a dream and aspiration for many, but what is it about the experience that makes it so desirable? What, exactly, do children, and their parents, gain from an education experience overseas?
Studying abroad is often described as a “life changing experience,” not only for the child, but for the parents as well. Due to the diverse set of experiences a child encounters while away from home, parents see their little ones evolve into an independent young adult with a newfound appreciation for the family, ready to tackle any issues and conquer any obstacles coming their way. It’s no wonder that every year, a growing number of parents aspire to send their child to a foreign university, and here are our top five reasons why:
Improve Job Opportunities
Parents understand that education from a globally recognized college can multiply the chances of post-graduation career opportunities for their child, providing an outstanding return on the investment made. International colleges prepare students to solve real-world problems decisively and effectively.
Besides lectures, the curriculum and degree encompass a wide range of components, such as field trips to relevant locations, case competitions, and internships over summer and winter breaks, to ensure students are completely prepared when they enter a professional set-up. Even if children want to return home after completion of their programme, parents know they will be attractive to employers with their blend of foreign and domestic education, experiences, and perspectives.
Enhance Soft Skills
While a student’s technical strength may get their foot in the door, it is their people skills that will open most of the doors. Soft skills are interpersonal skills that enable students to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people. They characterize their relationship with other people. They enable them to work well with groups, solve problems, manage their time, and take personal responsibility for their work.
Colleges abroad, to build and develop these skills, encourage students to participate in discussions, classroom presentations, and group projects. They are motivated to get involved in clubs and societies and hone in on their leadership skills.
These soft skills come to the rescue at various stages of life. For example, a working professional will need these skills to be on top of their work, manage time efficiently, take decisions that’ll benefit the company, manage the team, maintain a pleasant work culture, and stand out in whatever it is that they do. Parents realize that strong soft skills will help at each stage and age of their child’s life—not only within the office or classroom walls, but also beyond.
Gain a Worldview
We live in an increasingly globalized world, with continual integration between global markets and national businesses. To successfully compete in the international marketplace, multinational and small businesses need employees with cross-cultural competence, and knowledge of foreign trends and climate. Professors at foreign institutes, regardless of area of study, expose their students to advancements, innovations, case studies, and problem statements from across the planet.
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As the world becomes increasingly flat, students are taught to be aware of the progress and issues facing their industry, and strategize on the most effective course of action. Once students graduate, the exposure received allows them to seamlessly work across borders with minimal disruptions. Additionally, as firms broaden their horizons, these students can be at the forefront.
Exposure to a Diverse Environment
Exposure to an alien culture, and adaptation to a completely new environment, can make children more confident and mature, providing an opportunity to discover themselves while gaining an understanding of a different society. Furthermore, students at top colleges abroad are surrounded by some of the sharpest minds in the world. Not only do they have classmates from countries across the globe, but also students from a broad range of backgrounds, including renowned musicians, actors, dancers, entrepreneurs, Olympic winners, and members of the armed forces.
The cultural diversity provides for great learning, as each discussion, exercise, or activity on campus exposes students to multiple viewpoints, and teaches them to respect an alternate point of view. Parents appreciate the grounding received at universities abroad, as it prepares their child to embrace each individual’s working style and work productively with them, regardless of background or geography.
Access to a Global Network
The bonds students develop on campus through classroom and external interactions only continue to strengthen over time. These friendly connections made during college days have the potential to become future business partners, co-founders, investors, clients, vendors, mentors, and so much more. When confronted with a business dilemma, for example, students can call or email a college professor or alumni to help resolve the issue.
International universities further cultivate these relationships by setting up alumni clubs and associations in different geographical locations within India and across the globe. For example, the Harvard Club of India works towards empowering interaction, sharing knowledge, and networking among the alumni by organizing social events, workshops, and lectures. Parents place great value on this strong professional network available in almost every corner of the world, as it can significantly distinguish their child from his/her peer group.
Indian parents wish to send their children abroad for higher studies as it exposes them to a broad range of learning opportunities, both inside and outside of the classroom. The holistic educational environment truly provides students with the appropriate tools to successfully enter and thrive in the next phase of their life.
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