5 Key Benefits Of Studying Abroad
Considering a master’s degree abroad? From internships at Vogue and Chanel to learning about Silicon Valley entrepreneurship, find out the career benefits of studying abroad
The world is increasingly interconnected. In your future career, you’ll likely connect with colleagues, clients, and partners in all corners of the globe.
And despite the challenges of COVID-19, studying internationally brings significant benefits for your professional career. More than 60% of employers across consulting, finance, and professional services say they value graduates with international experience.
So how else can studying abroad help set you up for success?
1. While studying abroad, you learn about business challenges within different contexts
Not all challenges facing the business world can be approached from the same lens or cultural context. This is a focal point of the MiM Global Economic Transformation and Technology (GETT) program at EDHEC Business School, one of BusinessBecause's business schools to watch in 2022.
Ciara Gumsheimer (pictured), originally from Germany, joined the MiM GETT study abroad program as she wanted to gain different perspectives on the same problems facing businesses.
“This helps you to become more adaptable and empathetic as a business leader,” she says.
On the two-year academic EDHEC Master in Management program, students split their first year between EDHEC’s campus in Paris and SKK Graduate School of Business in Seoul, South Korea, while finishing their final year at the University of California Berkeley-Haas School of Business in the United States.
GETT students study topics like Strategy and the Management of Innovation in Paris, Creativity and Innovation in Korea, and Technology and Entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley in the US.
“It was interesting to observe that entrepreneurship is still a small but growing topic in Korea,” says Ciara, who is interested in pursuing a career in venture capital and entrepreneurship and currently interning with a Berlin-based startup.
“Studying abroad showed me that not all markets are ready for the same products, and often introducing a successful product into an entirely different culture will involve understanding where hesitation might come from, and how to educate the consumers first.”
EDHEC MiM student Ciara on Jeju Island, South Korea ©Ciara Gumsheimer
2. Studying abroad helps you widen your perspective
Across these countries, GETT students learn to navigate the global business sphere, learning about business and managerial challenges related to technology, sustainability, and entrepreneurship.
The GETT classrooms are filled with people from a mix of backgrounds, with eight different languages spoken in a typical cohort. Plus, you’ll be immersed alongside peers from the countries you’re visiting.
“I was confronted with people from other countries, and it helps you to better understand different people and working styles if you have that global experience,” says Marie Auré, a French student on the GETT program who is currently studying abroad in the US.
Working in diverse groups has been linked with greater innovation and improved financial results, both of which are crucial for any business.
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3. Study abroad programs offer exciting internships and career opportunities
Students on the GETT program at EDHEC also participate in two six-month internships between their first and second year of the diploma.
Marie (pictured) experienced advertising at an internship with Vogue Paris, where she learned how new technologies like AI can drive targeted advertising. She also worked for the Chanel global team in the media department, where she managed social media advertising for Chanel’s global markets.
During her internship at Chanel, she regularly spent time talking to people in different countries, such as Malaysia and South Korea. “You realize that when you talk to people from different countries, you need to adapt your messaging and remain respectful of different cultures,” she notes.
“If I hadn’t spent time in South Korea, I wouldn’t have been able to do my job in the Chanel global media team,” she says, crediting the insight she gained about Korean social media audiences from studying at SKK Graduate School of Business during her master’s degree abroad.
Marie says these international experiences have helped prepare her for her future career once she graduates, where she’s intending to enter the luxury fashion industry as a consultant or within digital advertising.
4. Through studying abroad, you’ll become more independent
While on a master’s abroad, you’ll quickly learn to adapt to a new environment and culture, which can help to boost your independence.
“You learn to speak to basically anyone because often you just don’t have a choice. In the best case, you pick up a new language. In general, you develop an openness for the unknown,” says Ciara.
This openness for the unknown is key when entering the rapidly evolving business world where you’ll regularly encounter new challenges and problems to solve.
5. Studying abroad can give you a competitive edge
The networking experiences you’ll gain from working alongside different people and companies, as well as the level of self-confidence and increased independence you’ll build while studying for a master’s abroad, could help you to gain a competitive edge in the business world.
In fact, Marie says study abroad programs have become even more valuable amid global challenges like COVID-19.
“Although many of our interactions are now digital, if you want to have a 360-degree view of what's happening in business now, you need to go to different countries and learn about the challenges there,” she says.