10 Reasons to Study Abroad

While in 2006 only 37% of employers valued studies and experience abroad, in the latest data that figure has increased to 64%. The facts are irrefutable, between 90% and 95% of students who have studied a master’s degree or an undergraduate degree abroad found work in their field within the first six months following their graduation. The data published by the Institute of International Education (IIE-Abroad Survey) and the University of California show clearly that studying abroad in an international university will obtain great benefits for those wishing to succeed in the world of employment in the short, medium and long term. Moreover, data from the European Commission and the ICEF Monitor show that: 92% of employers are looking for skills and knowledge they often encounter in students or employees who have lived abroad for longer or shorter periods of time. 64% of employers admit to giving greater responsibility to those new employees who have studied and who have worked abroad. Thus, while in 2006 only 37% of employers valued studies and experience abroad, in the latest data that figure has increased to 64%. The average salaries obtained are between € 65,000 and € 200,000 in sectors related to multicultural communication and negotiation, as well as in the various aspects of international business and commercial management according to Simply Hired. In view of the above, there are 10 reasons why studying and working abroad increases our employability as well as our professional, personal, and intellectual development. “The more countries we have lived in, the greater the use of our brain’s plasticity in adapting to changing environments and situations”

  1. Multicultural competences. Direct understanding of other environments, cultures and the world. As Confucius well said, “I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.” The more countries we have lived in, the greater will be the use of the plasticity in our brains in adapting to changing environments and situations.
  2. Real learning of other languages and sociocultural immersion in other environments. Language, culture and society are linked, and that combination is only learned in the country of origin under total immersions in the culture and its surroundings. Simultaneous translators know this very well: the real expressiveness of a language is only mastered if its essence is understood.
  3. Exposure to lateral and non-linear vision and thinking. When we study, work and live in other countries using a foreign language, we are forced to break the preprogramming we have been subjected to in our society, culture and religion (linear thinking). This makes us more analytical, creative, dynamic and innovative.
  4. New relationships and international contacts. Expanding and maintaining our network of contacts is one of the cornerstones of social and professional success. Growth is exponential if these relationships cross our borders.
  5. Development of the resolve and proactive attitude based on results and leadership; Improvement of self-esteem, as well as desire and ability to succeed. Leaving the family, social and cultural comfort area leads to the acceleration of intellectual, cognitive, logical and adaptive maturation.
  6. Exposure to new business alternatives and business options. Exposure to services, lifestyles and alternatives fosters our entrepreneurial creativity. Hence, many business ideas and know-how typical of many new startups are fruit of seeing how people live in other countries and how their needs meet.
  7. Maximum valuation of employers. Having studied in an international environment, especially if it has worked simultaneously in other countries, is highly valued by the most prestigious companies.
  8. Development of independence and economic-financial survival skills. In a society in which our students have been directed towards the dependence of the environment – aid, subsidies and unemployment – the international environment redirects them towards self-reliance and survival with scarce means.
  9. Plurality of educational systems, as well as personal management. For better or for worse, there are other systems more flexible, dynamic and plural than Spanish. Adapting to other options gives us new points of view and generates in us additional resources and options that we may not have known before.
  10. Personal challenge and a unique lesson for life. The act of personal improvement and emotional growth that is acquired in other environments, fosters and becomes deeply rooted in our self-esteem and confidence. Although this struggle brings hard times and even frustration, the common denominator that endures is the reminder that the experience of studying and living abroad was worth it, the experience was enriching and, for many of us, fun and unique. By Professor Edgar Barroso – Director of the MBA Program at SIU Madrid Article originally published in Spanish: http://cincodias.com/cincodias/2016/10/12/economia/1476283504_148108.html