If you are reading this post, you might have taken your big decision – ‘to study abroad!’ You should give it a careful thought; discuss it with your parents before making any plans. Plan months in advance and make sure all the details are taken care of.
Here are some helpful tips to consider
The purpose of studying abroad is to gain experience that’s related to your professional and personal goals. One ubiquitous mistake students make is choosing a destination for the study that they wanted to visit. Rather, you should choose a university, country and city that is best suited to your goals and expectations. Also, keep your budget in consideration. Start your abroad study preparations at least six to twelve months beforehand. The admission process usually takes a lot of time.
Search & Apply for Scholarships
Most universities have funding options available. Check the scholarships / financing your studies / funding pages of the university you are applying to. Every scholarship has its own set of requirements. Carefully read the requirements and asked questions and answer them. You must explain in detail why you should study abroad, experience another culture and why you feel you are worthy of that scholarship. You should also be able to answer what it is that you aim to give back to the society.
Most countries have regulations for medical and health fitness before you can fly abroad. So check with the respective embassy or the university’s international office of any such regulations. Also, it is better to take all the necessary vaccines beforehand. In some countries, for example, Germany, as a student you have to pay a monthly health insurance fee. In such instances, if you encounter a medical condition, your entire medical expenditure will be borne by your health insurance company.
Learn the Culture
Before you leave, scout the internet to get a gist of the culture and history of the country you’ll be living in. do not look the world from rose-tinted glasses and assume it is purely colorful and wonderful. It can be very challenging to adjust altogether in a foreign country, be it the climate, regulations, language, culture, education system and what not. You’ll be living within a society that’s unfamiliar and in some ways may seem strange. The people you meet in your host country will be in for a greater appreciation if you understand the culture.
Before you depart, ask the international office of your university to provide you with a list of all the important things that can make your living abroad much easier that you need to carry. It can range from trivial things such as toiletries, spices, cooking utensils, clothes to mandatory documents such as official admission letter, your marks memos, visa and a set of photocopies, etc. If you are set to visit colder countries, it would be wise to purchase winter boots and a puffer jacket in the host country itself as the things you buy in India might not meet the harsh conditions there.
Use these tips to your advantage, start your preparation well in advance and have a pleasant stay while abroad. Remember one thing – the prime reason for your abroad visit is to study!
P.S: Many students contemplating the idea of abroad study often face with this question – should I approach an abroad study consultancy? My say – if you are someone living under the rock and have no Googling skills, then approach one. Otherwise, use the internet to your capacity as much of the information is available for free. There are several social forums and international study portals at your disposal offering free info.
P.S.S: If you’re still in a dilemma, email me: firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll be more than happy to assist you.