Seeing your children head overseas to study can be a daunting process for parents, especially if they’re heading far afield for a prolonged period. Empty nest syndrome can hit particularly hard when your children are abroad and you’re unable to visit with ease.
The benefits of studying abroad are significant, however, and if your child has the chance to do it, it could help them advance their career in the future.
Anyone who has studied abroad and lived in a different country for a significant period of time can attest to the growth and confidence that develops while forging a new life overseas.
Feeling out of your depth or comfort zone can be anxiety-inducing and stressful, but in pushing ourselves we discover what we’re really capable of. And what could be more enriching than losing yourself in a foreign culture and re-emerging more experienced and worldly?
Additionally, employers will attest that overseas study is a big plus point on any CV, and if your child manages to pick up the language of their host nation their employment opportunities could really open up.
Is your child thinking of studying abroad? Make sure they’re considering these key points:
- Be prepared! – It is imperative that your child has their visa, passport, finances, insurance, lodgings etc. organised before they leave to start their time abroad. They will also need to check what documentation is required by the institution they plan to study at.
- Be even more prepared! – Starting to learn the language before they leave will greatly help the settling in process your child will go through. Locals will appreciate the effort and it will make getting acquainted with other students that bit easier. Your child may also want to do some research into the layout of the area where they’ll be staying so they feel more confident navigating their surroundings once they arrive.
- Better safe than sorry – Chances are that the culture, laws and social norms of your child’s new country will differ from back home. While experiencing something different is invigorating, being ignorant of laws and attitudes could land them in trouble. Advise your child to gain an appreciation for the main legal and social differences and get them to register with the local embassy if they feel at all concerned. There’s no escaping crime no matter where you go in the world, but being prepared and knowing what action to take if there are problems could help your child feel more at ease.
- There’s more to life than partying – The thought of an exciting nightlife might be one of the main reasons why your child is keen to study abroad, but it’s well worth reminding them that spending days in bed hungover instead of immersing themselves in the local art and culture will be regretted when they look back on it. Of course, it’s important that they enjoy their time abroad as much as possible, but having a list of key places to go and things to do prepped before they leave can help them maximise their time in the country.
Freedom! And Everything that Comes with It.
True independence may be exhilarating for a newly liberated youngster, but the uncertainty of the real world is not lost on their parents. Everyone wants their child to be secure, so if the distance between you and your offspring is going to be particularly notable, you may want to ensure you have financial support organised in case your child needs it.
If your child is planning to study abroad and you want to be able to send them money on a regular basis, but don’t want to get stung paying hefty transfer fees, it can be worth looking into different international money transfer providers.
Using a currency transfer provider which can help you streamline and automate your transfers, while charging no transfer fees and offering a competitive exchange rate, may better suit your interests if you’re looking to make regular payments to your son or daughter when they’re living overseas.
Finally, if your child’s planning a move abroad in the near future and you’re concerned for their wellbeing, talk to them honestly about your worries. Once they appreciate your concerns they’ll be more likely to remember to call when they’re supposed to and take your advice on board. Remember, their moving overseas also means you have a great excuse to travel abroad yourself while they’re engaged in their studies, although you may want to look at alternatives to student accommodation!