Studying abroad is a vital component of receiving a global education. This type of education is essential to obtain in our quickly changing world. At present, less than 1% of US students study abroad. This number is being viewed as a gesture of insensitivity of other cultures, and presents itself as arrogance. Studying abroad has countless benefits for the participants, and also is extremely important in terms of our country’s relationship and leadership ability in the rest of the world. There are many personal benefits provided to the participants of study abroad programs. Studying abroad helps students learn and improve vital leadership skills. These skills include communication skills, problem-solving skills, and decision-making skills. They also include creative thinking, assertiveness, and dedication. Without these skills it is impossible to become a successful leader in today’s world. Enhancing one’s education with study abroad also provides some obvious benefits such as improving language skills, providing an opportunity to travel, becoming an important component of one’s resume, and helping one learn more about his or herself. Another advantage of studying abroad is being able to make new contacts and form lasting connections and relationships with individuals from other cultures. This will assuredly prove very useful throughout an individual’s lifetime and can provide for an open door through which individuals can make a difference in ways they never imagined possible. When I studied abroad in Italy, I met people from all over the world. I developed close relationships with individuals in Mexico, Columbia, Australia, France, and the United States. We still correspond regularly, visit one another, and help each other with cross cultural assignments and projects. From 1950 to 1999 the International Education of Students conducted the first large-scale survey to explore the long-term impact of study abroad on a student’s personal, professional, and...
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