Studying abroad helps Kent State students soar

Many college students are not sure whether they want to go abroad while attending school. So, why study abroad? There are many lifelong assets that students can gain from traveling the world.

Student study abroad peer ambassador, Alissa Thomas, studied abroad in Florence, Italy and Dresden, Germany. I had the chance to interview Thomas and she described her experience being one of the best of her life, learning a lot and gaining lifelong friends and experiences.

“I feel like I am a better person now, I am stronger person, I am a happier person, I’m more driven by world culture than our culture,” Alissa said in the interview.

Alissa studying abroad in Florence, Italy

Looking at studying abroad from a larger scale, students can gain personal growth, cultural development, language and career skills and most importantly, education. University of California Merced researched studying abroad and found that 100 percent of students found improvement in their GPA after returning from their abroad trip, some students even found their GPA to rise twice as quickly.

Alissa and friend abroad for Kent State

On Kent State University’s website you can find information about their study abroad program. Kent State has locations in Ohio, Italy, and Switzerland. These locations offer a range of different courses that you can take, along with study tours and trips all throughout the country. Internships and other career opportunities are also available throughout these programs.

Instead of being away for a whole semester, week-long and summer exchanges are available in destinations such as the United Kingdom, South Korea, Japan, Brazil and more. Also, The International Student Exchange Program has over 300 institutions in 50 countries that personally match your studies.

Kent State Students in Switzerland http://www.kent.edu/globaleducation

Taking the risk of being away for awhile can really broaden your horizons as a student. Seeing different customs, cultures, food, religion and natural wonders of the world can really change a person’s point of view.

When traveling abroad so many new experiences come your way! You learn how to find yourself while discovering new interests and hobbies that are exposed to your life. UCMerced also found that 80 percent of students that study abroad feel more adapted to work environments because of the assets they learned from going abroad.

You also make friends that will last a lifetime all throughout the world. During your travels you will meet so many new people and if you stay connected you will be able to go back to their country and continue those lifelong connections. All of this contributes to your personal development.

New perspectives along with a sense of a new language can strongly strengthen your career opportunities as well. Employers strongly value studying abroad experiences because they know they immense knowledge that you gather from the trip. UCMerced studies show that 97 percent of students who have studied abroad found employment within a year of graduating, while only 49 percent found employment who did not study abroad. Along with that, 25 percent of those students started their careers with a higher salary then those who did not study abroad.

Kent State Students in India http://www.kent.edu/globaleducation

Having diversity and knowledge of cultures all around the world is a great virtue. Whether you decide to stay in the country you visit and work, or take your experiences back to your homeland you are already a step ahead of a candidate next to you.

Take the opportunity to study abroad while you can. Later in life you will be busy will school, work and family. College is the best and most accessible time to travel, learn and see new things!