Study Abroad

Merrimack College Study Abroad Photo Contest Fall 2011 - 3rd place

Merrimack College
Study Abroad Photo Contest Fall 2011 – 3rd place

Have you ever thought about what it would be like to work over seas? Have you ever wanted to explore a culture so different from the one you were raised in? Study abroad is just that. Study abroad immerses the student in the challenges of taking classes and sometimes interning over seas with other students, in the same age range, with similar interests. 

In an interview with Greg Jabaut, the associate director of International Studies, I found out some important things one should think about when pondering whether or not to study abroad.

Q: How would studying abroad deepen the learning goals of a liberal arts student?

A: Through exposure to new ideas and attitudes, study abroad students develop more global and creative ways of approaching and then solving problems, both in the classroom and in their future workplace. In order to survive and thrive abroad, and to fully understand their host culture, students must develop effective communication skills, often in a new language.

Q: What are some common fears students who think of studying abroad face and what advice would you give them to over come those fears?

A: I always tell students that being nervous about study abroad is completely normal, but that as long as they still feel even a little bit excited about their future study abroad experience, they will be just fine. Students make fast, long-lasting friendships abroad, not only with locals, but also with other American students from all over the country. Most Siena students don’t just survive study abroad; they thrive, calling it the highlight of their undergraduate experience.

Q: How would a student who studies abroad differ (pros and cons) in comparison to one who has not studied abroad?

A: In general, students that study abroad return home with a better understanding of who they are and where they are going in life. They also return more adventurous, self-reliant, and tolerant of the unfamiliar. I know I’m biased, but I’m not sure there are any cons to studying abroad!

Studying abroad has so many personal benefits and also academic benefits. It could be the one line on your resume that made you stick out to a future employer, or your gained skills in conversational language from where ever you travel might be useful in an interview. Even small things like that will only grow from your experiences abroad.

On the website, under Academics, under High Impact Practices, there is the Study Abroad option. (Or click the mage below) Once you are on the study abroad page, there are three options.

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Click the one that fits you and begin exploring!!