Every year, millions of students worldwide go to another country to get an international education. This is due to the various benefits an international education brings to students. According to a 2019 UNESCO report, international students worldwide numbered more than 5.3 million in 2017. A huge increase from the year 2000s with 2 million.
Traditionally, studying abroad entails students staying in another country for three to four years to finish a degree. However, aside from degree-focused programs, there are other ways to get an international education abroad, through short-term programs, such as certificate courses, or student exchange programs.
Exchange programs, like other long-term international programs, bring the same benefits a long-term study program offers, especially when it comes to experiencing another culture. Aside from gaining a new experience, below are the other benefits students get when they enroll in an exchange program.
Boost Your Employability
Studies have shown that study abroad programs have a strong impact on an individual’s employability after graduation. According to a report by IIE, as a whole, foreign education brings an overall impact on one’s expansion of job skills, career possibilities, and job progression and promotion.
One of the biggest outcomes of the study is the fact that students involved in short-term programs, such as an exchange program, are able to develop their teamwork skills better than those who joined long-term programs. In fact, employers worldwide agree that a foreign study experience is crucial in the development of one’s skills important in the workplace, such as adaptability, listening, language skills, and emotional intelligence.
Enhanced Knowledge on Global Issues and Events
International students involved in exchange programs are shown to have better knowledge of global issues and events. Our global society, as a whole, is undergoing rapid change. People, especially the younger generations are facing more and more global, social and environmental issues that require more focus and understanding to be solved. Thus, having a broader knowledge of these issues has become more important now than before. International students with a broader knowledge of global issues and events are more likely to take action in creating better global situations.
You Make Foreign Friends and Create a Global Network
Students in an exchange program are also able to build valuable relationships or lifelong friends from other cultures. When you have a friend from another culture, it helps you accept other beliefs and ideals, which in turn develops into empathy for everything that is different from your own experience. In addition, you get to build a global network that can be useful in getting insider information, and better insight into trends, which are useful in one’s professional success.
It Costs Less
Exchange programs, unlike long-term programs, may last for a few weeks, months, to even a year. Because of the shorter duration these programs require, there’s no need for students to allot a three- to four-year budget, thus it costs less. In addition, many student exchange programs also include students’ accommodation, aside from their tuition.
Want to learn more or apply for an exchange program abroad? Check out MSM Unify’s list of programs, and articles to start. Moreover, if you want to learn more about tips to make your study abroad journey more affordable or free, check out our article on Study Abroad: Tips To Study for Free or at a Low Cost