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Why Study Abroad?

People walking on london bridgeStudying abroad can be an exciting and enriching experience for business students – particularly as many companies broaden their reach globally. Summer programs, one-week or multi-week abroad intensives, and full semester-abroad excursions can enhance your academic experience as you earn credit toward your degree.

There are myriad advantages to stepping outside of your comfort zone to immerse yourself in a whole new culture. We’ve distilled some of these advantages into the top 5 study abroad benefits we think make the biggest impact on personal and professional development.

Top 5 Study Abroad Benefits

1. Build Your EQ

People skills are not just about making friends and fitting in; they’re strengths that go a long way in helping you carve out key alliances for your future. As the saying goes, it’s not just what you know – it’s who you know. 

When you change your surroundings, you open yourself up to new relationships and challenges, which contribute to the expansion of your interpersonal skills. By showing you have taken bold steps to develop your “EQ” – or “Emotional Intelligence” – you will set yourself apart in the job and internship market. 

2. Improve Your Language Skills

There is no doubt that knowing a second language looks good on your resume – especially select languages, like Chinese, Spanish, and Arabic. That said, you don’t have to learn the most in-demand language or study in the fastest growing business region to benefit. The very act of attempting to communicate in a different language can improve your ability to articulate a goal, vision, or idea, which is a major component of leadership and management. It is also vital for connecting with coworkers, inspiring a team, and building trust.

3. Broaden Your Point of View

While the consistency of your friends, family, and campus surroundings provide an important foundation on which to pursue your degree, there are limits to what you can learn in what is already familiar. Traveling to new places and adapting to different customs, transportation, food, and societal norms will broaden the way you think and interpret the world around you. 

You might find yourself opening up to different roles or new industries as a result of the fresh perspective you’ll earn during your study abroad experience. Spending time with new people in different cultures allows you to think differently about nearly every aspect of your life and your career. Developing this type of adaptability is an excellent way to prepare yourself for the necessary pivots that career longevity demands.

4. Draw Attention From Employers and Graduate Schools

When you show the acumen and confidence to spend time outside your comfort zone, you display courage and curiosity. This type of savvy is something prospective employers and graduate school admissions officers notice – even if you don’t plan on pursuing a job or an advanced degree in international business.

Studying abroad can also build character and maturity at an expedited pace, which isn’t always possible in a college environment alone. Your post-graduate endeavors will surely benefit from your added sophistication.

5. Squash Your FOMO

Not every advantage of studying abroad will be directly related to your studies or career. So much of the study-abroad experience is about learning to savor the moment. 

In new surroundings, you can see firsthand how big your world can be. As a result, the typical social-media-fueled FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) so many of us experience begins to lessen. The friendships and memories you build in a global program can last a lifetime and spark a travel bug that will take you to many interesting places down the road.

“Why should I study abroad?”

If you’re still asking yourself why you should study abroad, you might need to do more research into specific study abroad programs as they relate to your academic goals. Should you choose to explore a global program as part of your business degree curriculum, use our Top 5 Study Abroad Benefits to help guide you toward one that’s right for you.

The Pepperdine Graziadio Business School offers immersive learning experiences in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Australia. As a hallmark value of the Pepperdine Graziadio School, experiential learning is a distinct part of Graziadio Study Abroad Programs – whether you choose to go abroad for a few weeks or a full trimester.

See what our study abroad programs have to offer: