Two months ago, I start studying abroad in Thailand. For the first time for such a long period away from home. In this blog I tell you the 5 reasons why I think it’s worth it to pack your bags and start studying abroad.
Travel is probably the number 1 reason I went abroad, especially to Thailand. Before I go, I had to make the decision, were to go. Thailand is a country that gives so many different aspects: other culture, different language, different people and a lot places to visit. So for me, the decision was quite simple: ‘if I do it, I have to do it good’. In two month I have seen a lot beautiful places like: Bangkok, Koh Samui, Koh Tao, Koh Pangang, Kanchanaburi, Hua Hin, Chiang Mai and Pai. All places are different from each other, but are beautiful in their own way. During your abroad program It is a perfect moment to travel, you have five months and when you are lucky not many classes and homework.
11 of August, there we were, standing in Thailand on our own. We have never been to Asia before so everything was new. But on this age, with these possibilities it is perfect to take these chances and discover our limits. Standing on your own and learning about the mistakes you make is important and this is where a lot of intangible skills will come from. Independence, time management, organization, social skills, self-confidence; they’ll all develop automatically while you’re abroad. That doesn’t mean I could have stayed abroad for this long without the help of my parents and friends, but it’s different when you don’t have the possibility to go home whenever you want.
Here in Thailand I realized how important friends are for me. Meeting new people and creating lasting friendships is not only a benefit of studying abroad, but you also need it. They are your travel buddy, study buddy but also the shoulder you cry on when you’re feeling homesick. I am here with a good friend from The Netherlands, and I am happy that I can share every experience with her.
For me the language was one of the biggest difference from my study in the Netherlands. Normally I speak Dutch, in Thailand they speak Thai and the language to communicate with each other is English. In the place we life not many people speak English, so we had to communicate with our hands and feet. At the beginning this was quite difficult but after a while you find a way to communicate. You cannot learn this way of communication in books, but you must experience it by your own. Learn to communicate with people from all around the world is not only important for your exchange program, but also when you travel or start working in an international business.
New teachers, new students and a totally different school. When you study abroad you can study something different than you do at home. For me the biggest difference was to study in a different language. Studying in a new environment gives many opportunities: you may find that you learn more efficiently in a different area, you may respond well to a new style of teaching or you may even find a certain course or subject that fits you surprisingly well.