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Things To Do As An Exchange Student

Things to Do As an Exchange Student

Who is an exchange student? An exchange student is one who leaves his or her home country and goes to a foreign country to study there. The time that an exchange student spends in the foreign country ranges from between a few weeks to even up to a year.

During the student exchange program, the student learns the culture and the ways of the foreign country through direct application.

How do you become an exchange student

Usually, students approach established organizations to participate in these programs. These organizations are in the business of facilitating student exchange programs and are in touch with different universities across the world. These organizations help the student with the following aspects of the exchange program:

  • Find a host family

  • Help get the student a student visa

  • Provides the student with insurance help

  • Helps organize flight plans for the student

Such organizations initially conduct interviews of various students to check if they can fit into the program. Being well-versed about the host country, these organization help students prepare for the exchange program by giving them relevant information and details. These organizations run pre-exchange programs that help the students to orient themselves to the host culture so that the transition will be easy and smooth.

Benefits of participating in student exchange program

It makes a lot of sense to participate in a student exchange program at least for a short duration of your college life for the following benefits:

It is an excellent opportunity to experience the life of a different country – Exchange programs will give you an excellent opportunity to learn, understand, and experience the life of a different country. These once-in-a-lifetime opportunities can be wonderful eye-openers as you break boundaries and learn new ways of living. As most of these programs happen during college breaks, your desire for travel can also be managed.

You will be able to learn new languages – As you will be living with the host family, learning to speak the local language of the foreign country becomes imperative. This will give you exposure to multiple languages.

Educational benefits – Learning in a different country will add a new perspective of the same subject. You will see how similar things are taught and learned in a different country and this will enhance your depth of subject knowledge.

A student exchange program is a great value-addition to your resume – Employers are fond of recruiting people who have had exposure to multiple cultures. This is because exposing yourself to different environments enhances problem-solving skills. Thus, a student exchange experience will be viewed very positively by potential employers.

It does not cost much – Exchange programs do not work like "study abroad" programs which will be quite expensive. As an exchange student, you will be paying the normal tuition fees to your institution while getting the benefit "having studied abroad" in your transcript. The extra cost would include travel, accommodation, and visa charges which will not be too much. Moreover, many institutions offer exchange program grants and scholarships as well.

Things to Do As an Exchange Student

Here are some great tips to follow so that you can get maximum benefit from your student exchange program:

Don't hesitate to try out new things – Don't hesitate to say "yes" to anything that will give you exposure to experiencing the new land. So, if your host family asks you to go to the supermarket with them or the grandmother in the family wants to cook the traditional family dish, say yes to all such things.

You will love the experience and you will learn that things are different from where you come from but the love and affection of human beings are the same. Moreover, these experiences will become your stories for the future.

Learn the language – Learning a new language sharpens your mind. It is quite easy to speak your own language especially if the host family knows it. Moreover, since English is spoken nearly in all countries by most people, it is easy to stick to speaking in English. Please avoid this and make a conscious effort to learn the language of the country you are visiting. It would be very silly when you boast about your exchange program to your friends later on and you did not even learn the language!

You take the first step – If you don't take the initiative to learn and make friends, it is highly unlikely that you will make many friends. Don't hide behind silly clichéd reasons like, "I am a shy person," "I don't know how to start a conversation," etc. Your exchange program is yours not someone else's. So, if you want the maximum benefit from it, make sure you always take the first step.

Avoid spending time online or at home – While on an exchange program, make sure you spend a lot of time outdoors and meet new people. Avoid staying indoors or spending time online talking to people back home. Scrolling down FB pages will not do you any good, but the joy you get out of making new friends or speaking to new people or smelling the air of the new country will always be remembered by you. So, get out and have fun!

Make friends with people from your host country as well as those on exchange programs from other countries – This is a great opportunity to make friends from different countries. Don't restrict your friendship only to the people of the host country. Include those students who are also on exchange programs from other countries. This will give your social network connections a huge boost while giving you ample opportunities to learn about other countries as well.

Don't hesitate to wholeheartedly be a part of the host family – Even if you find the customs of your host family strange or funny, don't hesitate to participate. After all, they have opened their home for you. The least you can do is be open and accept them wholeheartedly. Some families are more open than others and you can see them struggling to deal with a foreign person in their home.

Yet, you must realize that they are your family till the time you are in the country. Do not treat their home like you would treat a hotel because it is not. Volunteer to do the dishes. Volunteer to cook dishes from your home country for them. Don't even hesitate to call them "mom" and "dad." Most people in this world love being loved. So, give your love freely to your host family. You will be the ultimate gainer.

Final Notes

Student exchange programs are excellent opportunities to broaden your learning horizon. They are wonderful ways to experiencing your learning process. They help you look beyond textbooks and classrooms and labs and professors. They make you realize that everyone can be a teacher in his or he own way and you can learn from everyone.

Be like the sponge, imbibing everything that comes your way during the exchange program. It is quite unlikely you will be getting another such a fabulous opportunity.

At Prescott Papers, our team of excellent and qualified writers will be happy to help you while you do your exchange program. Call us for custom essays, projects, assignments, assessments, dissertations, and more. You can check out our list of writing services and contact us for any help.

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