Deciding to move to an entirely different country with an entirely different culture is always a major decision in anyone’s life. There are a myriad of hoops that need to be jumped through before a student can even hope to begin their education in a country of their choosing, pursuing a degree that they feel would be best for them. This entire process can be overwhelming for anyone that wants to take this step in their life and very often, it’s possible that they get lost in the process and lose sight of why they set out to study abroad in the first place. In this piece, I want to share with you what it actually means to study abroad, everything from the culture shock to carving a place for yourself in the country of your choosing
Why do you want to leave?
It’s very important before you leave for a different country that you ask yourself a few of the most important questions like
Why are you choosing the country that you want to go to?
Choosing the country that you want to study in is daunting because no two countries are the same and the type of culture that best suits you might be found in a country that wasn’t your first choice and it is important to pick the right country since it is the place you will be calling home for the next two to four years.
Are you ready for the transition to a place where you don’t know anyone?
Something to keep in mind when going abroad for studies is understanding that it is essentially starting over from scratch. If you’re lucky, you might have family members where you plan to go but leaning heavily into familial help is not the best route to take. The experience that you will have abroad is after all exactly what you make of it.
You’re here. What now?
After all the trials and tribulations of the process of getting here, you’ve finally made it. It was a long road here but now that you’re here, what do you do? It’s a new country, a new city, a brand new culture and all of this brings with it new challenges. When you first land, it can be quite overwhelming getting to terms with all the changes and it is tempting to just go to your new quarters and find some comfort inside 4 walls that you can make your own. That might be fine for the first few days but facing the new set of challenges after recharging is always the best way to deal with them and here are a few ways you can do that.
Familiarize yourself with the city: Get out into the city, walk around and observe the culture for yourself. It’s possible that you will have the fish-out-of-water look for a few days, maybe even a few months but that look can go away once you know the city better. The best way to experience any city is to have your boots on the ground and walk around until you know where you need to go when you need something.
Don’t lean into familiarity: It is tempting to find fellow countrymen and lean heavily into just befriending everyone that comes from the same place you did. It’s fine to have friends from back home but you would be missing out on a lot of the culture if you simply fall back into a home away from home. Befriend the locals, experience their culture first hand and you’ll find that there blossoms a mutual respect between you and the locals.
Find a job: Some countries have restrictions on how many hours you can work during university months but most countries allow their students to work full time over summer break. A part or full time job is amazing to have extra money to cover living and leisure costs but it also has the added benefit of ensuring you immerse yourself into the culture and make friends along the way if you have a hard time approaching people outside of work or study.
Don’t forget why you came here: It is possible to lose yourself into the glamour of a new country but it’s always important to remember the original goal that you set for yourself when you came here. Did you want to just get a good education in a highly esteemed university? Focus on getting the best grades that you can. Did you want to possibly stay after university and transition from a student to a full time resident? Network and try to find a workplace that will be happy to keep you on beyond your degree, a company that is willing to sponsor your transition from being a student to a working member of that society. Don’t lose track of what you set out to do, begin sowing the seeds of what you hope to reap in the early days of your stay.
Those are just a few of the essential things to keep in mind when moving to a new country and starting over from scratch. It is a great opportunity to experience the world and different cultures but it is also an overwhelming experience. Here at Qsmith, we want to make sure that you have a better chance at experiencing the culture without constantly worrying about assignments and deadlines. Our expert team of writers make sure that your assignments are well written while following the proper standards that are expected in universities all around the world. Take a breather from the constant assignments, let us make your life easier. Get a quote today and see what subject matter experts can do for you.