When students decide to study abroad in another country, they are not only experiencing academic excellence but also going through a very important stage of personal development. They leave behind their family and friends to head onto the next stage of their lives. When I went to the U.S. for my Bachelor’s in 2018, I did not realize how different my life’s trajectory was about to be.
I did not come back home for two and a half years. And then when I came home, I learned that I had grown at a much faster pace than my friends who decided not to study abroad. When you study and live in a different country, you get to experience a number of things by just being there. Even if you do not actively try to learn new things, your eyes and ears are still absorbing information. You do not realize how much you have learned until you go back to the place you came from. There is nothing wrong with being in your home country – it’s all about choices. If you choose to study abroad, you choose to live in a very different culture. You are actively making a decision to live and learn about a whole different world.
If students realize this before they decide to study abroad, they can actively focus on learning and growing. Comparing and competing with others might not be the best thing, but competing to be a better version of yourself is definitely something all students should focus on. Compare yourself with the version of you one year ago, or six months ago.What new things have you learned? Keep a track of them. Write a journal or make videos to document everything that you are learning and experiencing in the present, so you can look back at it in the future. You will surprise yourself!
Guest author: Nand Javia