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When You Should Say No to An International Exchange Program
Studying abroad is an exciting opportunity for any student. You get to see and experience different cultures, get to live independently and earn a degree simultaneously. However, studying abroad is not for everyone. Student exchange programs require discipline, the right attitude, and a lot of self-control.
In some rare cases, younger people are susceptible to the risks and dangers of living in a different country to study. Some are not emotionally or financially ready to sustain a comfortable life while studying abroad. No matter how big of an opportunity an international program is, it might not be the best course of action for you. Here are some of the top reasons why you should say NO to the opportunity of studying abroad.
Lack of Financial Resources
Studying abroad offers a lot of opportunities, but it can be very costly. On top of the tuition fees, you will need to finance your accommodation, transportation, communication, food, and other daily expenses. Although some countries offer cheaper international exchange programs, the programs available in these areas may not be the most effective and beneficial program for you. If you are looking to specialize in a specific program in a foreign country, take time to understand the financial requirements to sustain such programs. If a program you need is not financially feasible for you, you can postpone the opportunity up until you find a viable source of financial aid to support your off-shore education.
Too Attached with Friends and Family
Long-distance relationships can be complicated even with the type of technology we enjoy today. Although some students want the adventure of meeting new friends in a foreign country, some are still too attached to their loved ones and families at home, making it quite challenging to move to a different country for a long time. Suppose you think homesickness would make it difficult for you to focus on your studies or to enjoy and appreciate a new culture in a different country, you should reconsider giving your international exchange program opportunity to someone else. Otherwise, make sure you are emotionally stable to face a drastic adjustment.
Values Your Social Life Too Much
The fear of missing out can be a detrimental factor that will affect your student exchange program opportunity’s success. If you are used to going out with friends, attending the best parties in town and going to the best beaches on weekends with your crew, being in a foreign country to study might be boring for you. Although there are plenty of places to check out and new people to meet as you begin your adventure as a student in a foreign land, the cost of going out and traveling might hurt your finances as an international student. You might also have difficulty adjusting to school and meeting academic requirements if your focus is on having an active and fun social life.
Looking for Love
If your reasons for participating in a student exchange program is to escape from a current relationship or to find a new one, it would be best to say no to the opportunity instead. It is a very naive reason to pursue education overseas. Some students do find their true love abroad, but it is rarely the case. Student exchange programs are one of a kind opportunities that should not be taken lightly. If your focus is elsewhere, you might end up being less productive and less committed to your actual purpose of learning and gaining new personal experiences.
If You are Not Willing to Adapt
Studying overseas requires a lot of adjustments and changes. You will need to learn the language, respect the culture, and adapt to this new place’s norms and practices. It will be a waste of time, money, and effort if you are not willing to welcome changes that may be necessary as you move to a foreign land to study. The necessity to adjust and adapt will force you, too but may affect your attitude and passion towards this opportunity negatively. If you are not interested in learning a new language and seeing yourself having a hard time surrounded by a different culture, studying abroad is not for you.
Life abroad as a student has many perks but has double the adjustment and challenges to face. On top of your studies, you will have to be emotionally prepared for the different possibilities you will encounter overseas. The food may be far from what you are used to having, the language is hard to learn, and the cost of living may be too expensive for you to afford. If you see yourself hindered by one or more of these reasons, an international exchange program might not be fit for you this time.
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