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Study Abroad: Crucial Points To Consider Before Enrolling In A Foreign College

Study Abroad: Besides the traditional destinations such the US, UK, Australia and Canada, a number of other countries have also opened up.

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Study Abroad: Crucial Points To Consider Before Enrolling In A Foreign College
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Over the years, there has been an increase in the number of students who are exploring the study abroad option to upgrade their employability. Besides the traditional destinations such the US, UK, Australia and Canada, a number of other countries have also opened up and offer a high-quality education and international experience to students. 

Talking about the most preferred career options for Indian students, Vaibhav Gupta, co-founder and chief marketing officer, iSchoolConnect, says, "Most Indian students prefer study options within the scope of STEM- Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Aspirants also prefer programmes in Business and Management. Many career opportunities await Indian students across diverse fields such as Computer Science, Healthcare, Finance, Engineering, and Education. Top courses such as Computer Science, MS in Data Analytics, Civil Engineering, Business Management and Medicine also provide future career opportunities to students."

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Multiple options to study abroad


Indian students today have several options to choose from while opting for a foreign country. Besides the traditional destinations such the US, UK, Australia and Canada, there are a number of other options available that offer a high-quality education and international experience. These include Singapore, Germany, France, Switzerland and Ireland. "We are seeing an increasing number of courses taught in English to cater for international students. However, selection of the right destination largely depends upon a range of factors that include safety, programmes on offer, employability, international recognition of the degree, costs (including scholarships), opportunities to work after graduation," says Abizer Merchant, director (India and Sri Lanka) at Macquarie University.

Internships are crucial


As per Aritra Ghoshal, founder and director of OneStep Global, multiple surveys have shown that the skills gained while studying abroad are the same skills that employers value and recognise in an increasingly global economic environment. "While considering their options abroad, students must prioritise programmes that offer comprehensive coursework and internships tailored to enhance employability," he adds. 

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Lakshmi Iyer, managing director, SI-UK India says, "Indian students studying abroad have access to a plethora of career opportunities. The scope of these opportunities range across industries and academics. For instance, those pursuing degrees in Engineering or Computer Science can make use of internships and co-op programmes offered by universities to gain practical experience in industry settings. It is critical for aspirants to stay updated on industry developments and gain relevant certifications to ensure their competitiveness in the employment market."

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Soft skills and networking have a role too 


Transitioning from academia to industry requires demonstrating not only technical abilities but also soft skills such as communication, teamwork, and problem-solving, which are highly valued by employers across various sectors, explains Ms Iyer. The students must initiate networking with alumni, attend career fairs and engage in industry-sponsored events.

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Understand the post-work visa system


Mr Merchant also highlights that foreign aspirants who wish to work after completing their education abroad must understand the government policy of their study destination. "For example, Australia offers a generous post-study work visa which allows graduates to stay back for up to 3 years after completion of their study. Working overseas offers the opportunity for students to gain invaluable work experience in different cultural settings, recoup their investment in their education and make them more competitive when they return home and seek work locally."

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Students must check global recognition of the degree


While most employers value international work experience and foreign graduates, it is important for students to ensure the global recognition of their degree and that it meets professional standards in their home country, explains Mr Merchant. For instance, courses such as Medicine and allied health follow strict professional standards and need to be checked before taking admission abroad.

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