Are You Ready to Study Away?
A final planning consideration depends on your personal readiness. Consider a few simple questions:
- Would you prefer to study away with a group of Kent State students and Kent State faculty, or would you prefer to study in another country where your peers are from many nations and your faculty is not from Kent State? (Both opportunities are available to you.)
- Are you prepared to leave familiar patterns and peers at Kent State for a little while?
- Are you ready to make some trade-offs in order to study away? For example, are you willing to give up concert tickets or a new pair of shoes to help build your personal savings for study-abroad?
- Are you intrepid in the fullest sense of the word? Not simply ready to see famous sights, but also to adapt to different cultures, different laws, different languages, different foods, different types of housing, different spiritual beliefs and different standards of hygiene?
- Are you able to be responsible for yourself? Can you manage your own money? Do your own laundry (without a washer or dryer)? Take care of your own health and well-being? Can you follow new procedures to keep yourself safe in a new environment (for example, following a buddy system rule or being careful not to leave your bags unattended)?
- Are you able to adjust to different concepts of time? “I’ll be there in an hour” has different meanings in some countries. And not every country is a fast-food nation.
- Are you ready to represent not only yourself, but Kent State University and your country? Are you ready to understand – without judgment – how others perceive your country and its role in the world?
- Are you aware of your own biases and prejudices (everyone has them) and are you ready to experience what may feel new and foreign to you?
- Are you ready to confront new situations on a daily basis? Are you able to see each situation as unique, and are you able to be flexible and be able to adapt your style accordingly?
- Are you ready to meet new people and form new lifetime friendships?
More information on studying abroad can be found at http://www.kent.edu/globaleducation.