Benefits of Education Abroad

Education abroad leads to significant gains in 11 of 15 critical 21st century workplace skills.

IIE Center of Academic Mobility Research and Impact, IIE Generation Study Abroad

While students do not have to study abroad to benefit from an internationalized education at Seattle University, we believe that all students should see studying abroad as possible!  Learn how an education abroad can impact your SeattleU experience and can help you develop skills both personally and professionally, allowing you to stand out in the job market.

Experiential & Comparative Learning

  • Students can take courses that are unique to the program or region. Marine and Conservation Biology students can have first-hand field study experiences studying tropical ecology in the lush cloud rainforest of Costa Rica. Communication students can take courses as well as complete an internship in Paris. Students needing UCOR Module III courses can find courses that address global challenges. 

Strengthen Language Proficiency

  • Spanish Major and Minor students can take courses in Spanish-speaking countries and immerse themselves in the local culture. French Major and Minor students have a comparative experience of French in France and Francophone countries in Africa. Students in the College of Arts & Sciences can complete their year of a Modern Language requirement in a country and language of their choice, immersing in the practical application of the language and rich culture of the host country.

Cultural Competency & Humility

  • In our ever-changing global world, there is an emphasis on culture competency and the ability to interact with people of different cultures. In general, American culture favors individualism and students who study abroad develop their global competency and cultural humility. In our Jesuit Catholic tradition and Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm, there is an emphasis on praxis - experience, self-reflection, and action. As global citizens, being aware of others' cultural identities, as well as how Seattle U students are perceived globally can provide insight as future global leaders.

Deeper Understanding of Self, Community, and the World

  • By going abroad and leaving Seattle U, the Pacific Northwest, and the US contexts, students gain a deeper understanding of themselves, their communities, both in the host country and in the US, as well as their global impact on the world. Students have found new passions or changed their career trajectory after completing a term abroad. Political Science students have interned in the UK Parliament and had a fuller understanding of political systems elsewhere and their impact on the global community. 

Increased Ability to Problem-Solve and Adaptability

  • Even the simple act of trying to navigate and orient oneself in a new country activates problem solving skills through real life experiences. Once students enter the work force, they will have the confidence to navigate and problem solve unpredictable situations that may come their way. Through encountering and adaptiveness, which allow them to more easily meet the needs of future workplaces.

Professional Development

  • According to the OECD (2016), "skills have become the global currency of the 21st century". Employers want employees with "hard" technical skills, but more importantly "soft" skills that make them a self-reliant, confident, flexible, and adaptive employee. An education abroad experience can provide students with a unique opportunity to gain work-related skills in a global context. In our global economy, having employees who can adapt to the companies work culture and its diverse colleagues, work-related skills gained through an education abroad can boost employment prospects. 

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