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Why Study Abroad?

To have an international experience by studying abroad is a great way to enrich your college experience. Students have the opportunity to receive Spanish college credit in any of the School’s levels of Spanish while discovering an exotic and bio diverse country.

A Powerfull Experience

After studying abroad, most students never view their education in the same way again. It often influences subsequent educational endeavours, including the decision to pursue higher degrees. Surveys show that more than 52 percent of students who study abroad indicated that they had achieved a post-graduate degree, compared to the 9 percent of U.S. Americans obtaining graduate degrees as reported by the U.S. Census Bureau*. More than 80 percent of respondents agreed that studying abroad had enhanced their interest in academic study.

Study abroad students return home with a greater vigor for academic pursuits and a renewed interest in lifelong learning. Nearly 63 percent of students said that the experience had influenced their decisions to expand or change their academic majors. In fact, nearly 90 percent of students indicated that their experiences abroad had influenced all their subsequent educational experiences.

For those students who studied abroad to improve or develop foreign language skills, experiencing a language firsthand—in the streets of a foreign city, in a local university course or while living with local roommates—made an indelible impact on their foreign language skills. Nearly 35 percent of the students who studied a foreign language abroad still use a language other than English on a regular basis (twice a month). Spanish was cited as the most commonly used language, followed by French and German.

Launch your Career

Listing a study abroad experience on your resume can also enhance your chances for job success. Having taken this initiative not only says something about your academic achievements, but also about your personal ambition and determination. More and more employers are seeking out culturally aware and experienced employees who can work effectively in an increasingly global workplace. Our statistics show that the influence of study abroad on future career goals and choices is profound, especially for those students who participated in an internship while abroad. Kathleen Turaski (IES London 1992), a University of Georgia graduate, wrote that her internship at The National Portrait Gallery in London was “the impetus to return [to London] in 1995 to attend St. Martin for a master’s in communication design. The international experiences have been a driving force in my design and career.”

Internships are an unrivaled way to experience local culture in the workplace and to improve foreign language skills, as well as to diversify your work experience. Of the 596 students who responded that they had interned while abroad, 70 percent agreed that the experience had sparked an interest in a career direction they ended up pursuing after their experiences abroad. It is becoming increasingly popular to intern while abroad. Eight out of ten students who had interned abroad said that they had acquired skill sets that influenced their future career paths, such as working for a multi-national organization, getting a job overseas or volunteering internationally.

Summary of Benefits:

Academic Advantages:
• Learn about a new culture
• Experience a new and different academic system
• Study subjects that are not offered at your College
• Improve your foreign language skills or learn a new language
• Gain an international perspective on an area of study

Personal Advantages:
• Independence
• Meet new people and make new friends
• Adventure and fun
• Travel and explore new places
• Grow in self-confidence
• Gain a broader outlook on life
• Improve cross-cultural communication skills
Career Advantages:
• Build international links
• Give yourself a competitive edge
• Make your resume stand out

Note: Contact the study abroad office or Spanish language department at your college prior to starting the program. Present your plan and ask exactly what is required in order to be assured that you will earn credits for your studies abroad. Universal de Idiomas will provide syllabi and other documentation typically needed by universities and colleges in order to complete credit arrangements.