25 Things to Know about Study Abroad

How much do you really know about study abroad? Read on to see how many of these you already knew! | Study Abroad and BeyondThere are plenty of things you already know about study abroad.

I mean… c’mon.  You’ve been thinking about this for a while, right?

You know the types of programs available, why it’s important to start early, and that you shouldn’t lose your passport.

And, you also probably have an idea about where you would like to study.

However… how much do you really know about studying abroad in general?

Here are 25 things to know about study abroad, starting with national trends and general facts:

  1. Only 1.6% of currently enrolled students in higher education participate in a study abroad program.
  2. Over half of study abroad students from the United States study in Europe.
  3. Most students (65%) participate in short-term study abroad programs, as opposed to the traditional semester-long study abroad.
  4. STEM fields make up the largest percentage of students studying abroad.
  5. The institution that sent the most students abroad in the last year was New York University, followed by Texas A&M and University of Texas.
  6. There are some all-expenses-paid programs abroad for students sponsored by the U.S. government.
  7. Before you leave, getting all of the paperwork together will be a complete pain in the ass.
  8. You may wear your comfy sweatpants and shirt in public… but will likely not do it more than once.
  9. You will be able to navigate a new city like a freaking boss.
  10. There will be a day when you feel completely at home in your new home.
  11. Hostels?  Yes please.  They will become a comfortable part of your existence.
  12. Depending on how long you study abroad, there will be at least one day when you are completely over your experience.
  13. Despite the tough days, you will look back fondly on almost all of your experience as time goes by.
  14. There will be something from your time abroad that you will intensely miss when you go back home.  Actually, a lot of things.
  15. If you study abroad in the spring, you will probably not travel for too long after your program (even though you absolutely plan to).
  16. Your Insta and Snapchat game will be on point… but won’t show that you’re maybe a little homesick.
  17. Parties and festivals in other countries will actually be the best.
  18. You will get completely annoyed at tourists in your town (I mean, it’s YOUR town).
  19. There will be at least one time when you can’t figure out how to use a shower/toilet/sink during your travels.  Hopefully the picture won’t go viral.
  20. You will have a complete meltdown over something that never would have bothered you before.
  21. However, you will also get through a completely stressful situation with ease (to your own surprise).
  22. Cheap alcohol will lead to a miserable next day (… or next few days).
  23. You will have to change the way you do something; it will become a great example in a job interview of your adaptability.
  24. The friendships from your study abroad experience will leave a lasting impact on your life.
  25. You will return home a 2.0 version of yourself (but still compatible with other devices).

What surprised you about this list?  Share in the comments below, and follow me on Pinterest for more study abroad tips!

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25 Things You Didn't Know About Study Abroad | Study Abroad and Beyond

2 thoughts on “25 Things to Know about Study Abroad

  1. This is a great article! I especially like where you mention the % of students going on semester abroad programs rather than year long programs.

    There’s a great article from IIE.org that discusses the benefits of longer study abroad programs…https://www.iie.org/Why-IIE/Announcements/2017-10-02-Gaining-an-Employment-Edge. It is a great article and students considering a study abroad experience should definitely reconsider a semester abroad program over a longer program.

    I enjoy your articles. You provide students with some excellent information!

    1. Thank you so much! And I can’t agree more – there is so much more growth that happens as soon as students get over the three-month-hump and start to really live in a place.

      That’s a great article – thank you for sharing it!

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