Parents of Students Studying Abroad- Fears & Solutions

Studying abroad can turn out to be a great adventure for a student. It provides new experiences for them and helps in getting a job. Sending a child overseas, however, could be quite appalling for some parents. Here are some common fears that parents have, and the ways to overcome them. MONEY Money can be […]

Studying abroad can turn out to be a great adventure for a student. It provides new experiences for them and helps in getting a job. Sending a child overseas, however, could be quite appalling for some parents. Here are some common fears that parents have, and the ways to overcome them.

MONEY

Money can be a real practical worry and an obstacle for both parents and students. There is the concern of college fee, travel and commute, food, accommodation, etc. The difference in the value of currency makes it even worse.

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How to resolve it –

Look for scholarships provided by the colleges, private institutions, and the government. Plan your kids’ budget and their monthly allowance. Ask them to participate in the ‘work while studying’ programs to not only cover their expenses but also get some experience.

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HEALTH AND SAFETY

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It is a new country with different culture, weather, food and whatnot. It is common to get a little worried about your child’s health and well-being.

How to resolve it –

Keep in constant touch with your kid. Check out the weather and food of the country beforehand, and make appropriate preparations. You can even get an insurance for your kid if that helps. If he has some special needs, tell them to someone- their roommate, their teacher or the person they are going with him.

COMMUNICATION

Different countries have different time zones which make it difficult to communicate as easily as you did at home.

How to resolve it –

Keep a chart of the time difference between you and your child. Plan when you will communicate together and commit to it. You might have to get up very early or stay up late than usual. Make use of other communication methods like Facebook, WhatsApp, and Skypein addition to the traditional phone.

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NEED OF STUDYING ABROAD

ome parents think that studying abroad is not that important. They prefer an internship in the native country rather than a semester abroad.

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How to resolve it –

You have to change your mindset and look at this from another angle. Studying abroad for the summer or a semester or even a full course is becoming common now. Companies are looking for employees who are not confined to boundaries and have some international exposure. A summer abroad can be as rewarding as an internship, sometimes a summer abroad in a good institution even outclasses an internship in a small company.

CULTURAL AND LANGUAGE DIFFERENCES

Adapting to a new country is always difficult. The food is different, cultures are different, and language also turns out to be one of the biggest barriers. The fear of your child not fitting in and swaying away from religion is entirely understandable.

How to resolve it –

First of all, you can’t and shouldn’t impose religion on anybody. If religion and culture is your primary concern, then you can try and find a home-stayfor your child which matches your requirements. There are a lot of countries in which home-stays are normal, and there are websites which host this information to make your job easier. The language barrier could also be overcome in the home-stay.

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GRADUATION

It is a common misconception that studying abroad for a semester or the summer would come in the way of getting graduation in your parent college. One might miss some classes or even the placement sessions.

How to resolve it –

Talk to an academic advisor and the study abroad office in both the colleges to transfer the academic credits secured abroad to the home university. Plan ahead and make full use of the time so that there is no setback when your kid comes back.

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