Studying overseas is an opportunity that doesn’t present itself to many of us for one of a number of reasons. It might be because it just doesn’t appeal to you, maybe you’ve been offered a job in an industry that interests you or perhaps you just can’t afford to do it. Whatever the reasoning, there is no denying that the opportunity to go overseas to study is a great one, and a brilliant addition to your CV.
If you are fortunate enough to be in a position where you can go and study abroad, either because you have the adequate funds or it’s part of your course, (it may even be in addition to your course), then you’ll probably be doing all kinds of research before you go.
You certainly have plenty of information available to you, including the best places to study, the courses on offer at the various Universities and the kind of accommodation available to you, but there is also plenty that you’re not told about before you go.
For some things, you can go online to do your research, for others, however, such as Universities in countries you wouldn’t immediately think of, like the International School Israel you will have to visit the specific website or speak to past or present students.
As touched upon, there are numerous things you might not even be able to find out online and you may not learn until you actually get out there. To help make that less of a shock for you, here are a few things to help you prepare yourself.
One such thing is that you are almost certain, at some stage and to some degree, going to suffer with homesickness. Leaving home can be difficult enough but exciting at the same time, and the first few weeks will be new and exciting times for you that you might get very little time to notice just how much you miss the people back home and your home comforts, the things you’d normally be doing and where you’d normally be going.
After a while, you will start to settle into your new surroundings and you’ll start to miss home less, but as long as you’ve got access to programs such as Skype or Apple’s FaceTime feature you can stay in touch with the people back home.
The conversion rate might also be an issue for you, especially to begin with. You might be thinking that something costing, for example, €10 is cheaper than something that would cost you £15 or $15 back home, when in actual fact it may not be as good value for money as you think. In a few days or weeks you will soon work out what is good value and steer clear of anything too expensive!
You’ll also meet tons of great people, many of which you might form long-term friendships with that continue after your time away. You might meet them through your accommodation or you might meet them through the course or through groups of friends so you definitely won’t be on your own, and if they’re from the local area they can show you around and help you to settle in.