Studying in another country takes plenty of preparation
THE SANTA CLARA
October 10, 2013
Though it feels as if the school year has just begun, some students in the middle of their college career have already begun to feel the weight of making plans for future years. The scramble has begun for housing, majors, minors and, equally important — study abroad.
Santa Clara boasts a large amount of study abroad programs and even more opportunities to connect with programs through other schools and organizations.
However, what many students seem to forget is that not everyone is applicable or accepted for study abroad, let alone for their first choice program.
Living in a foreign country is an exciting, scary and unique experience that a large portion of upcoming juniors and select seniors will be vying for. The application deadline for studying abroad next fall quarter is Dec. 15, which still feels far away for now, yet approaches quickly compared to the amount that is yet to be done.
Luckily, fall is not the only study abroad opportunity. Many students also choose to go abroad in the winter, spring and even summer. Summer is a great time to go abroad for students who need to stay at school to earn certain credits during the year.
So, you decided you wanted to fill out the application and go abroad. Now it’s time to decide where to go. It’s tempting to just jet off to the place with the most beautiful beaches, but it’s important to remember that you do have a major, and you will want to graduate the next year. Pick someplace that will enhance your learning, not stunt it.
The programs are all associated with majors and minors, so pick one that makes sense academically and will get you a few units that you can actually use to move forward with your credits.
The Study Abroad Office emphasizes that students choose a program based on whether or not it matches their academic, professional and personal goals.
You’ll have fun no matter where you go, so don’t stress if you end up somewhere you didn’t necessarily imagine yourself landing.
Many students often forget to take into account and plan for the financial implications of going abroad. Though many programs are similarly priced to Santa Clara’s tuition, living in a foreign country can be expensive, especially in places where the dollar is worth less.
It may not be your first priority when you start looking at locations, but in the long run, it’ll matter more than you think.
So make sure you have some sort of financial plan in mind so you don’t spend all your money at Oktoberfest and then end up broke for the rest of the quarter.
Studying abroad is an amazing and unique experience. In fact, most people who don’t study abroad often regret it.
“I wish I had traveled abroad,” said alumnus Eliza Brennan. “It would have made my college experience even better than it already was.”
It’s a time to truly spread your wings and become independent. In the end, it doesn’t matter where you go, it’ll be some of the best times of your life.
Contact Samantha Nitz at firstname.lastname@example.org.