10 Tips for Successful Adaptation When Studying Abroad

There are many things you need to prepare before you study abroad. Here are successful tips for adapting:

1. Learn to live independently from an early age

Make sure you are independent before you leave because you will do everything yourself. This starts from washing clothes, preparing and cooking food, going to college, going to the doctor when you are sick, to changing your own tire if your tire bursts.

This will help you become an independent student and also reduce your costs of living abroad. For example, if you cook, food costs usually only come to around $3 per meal, but if you order food at a restaurant, it can cost up to $20 per meal.

The same goes for changing a tire, the cost of changing a tire and changing oil in Canada for example is around $100.

2. Don’t just hang out

One of the biggest mistakes international students make is that they hang out too much. What happens is that when students graduate, instead of being able to speak fluent English, they can instead speak their local language.

Although it is important to maintain friendships, make sure you are also active in local activities that force you to mix with local people. This will also help you find networks that can potentially help you find work after graduation.  

3. Actively volunteer

Even though volunteering is unpaid, this is very important because this is an activity that you can put on your CV/Resume so that it shows your potential employer that you are a good person to work with.    

To avoid getting bored, make sure you also volunteer for activities that interest you or are related to your career goals. If you are in business school, yes, be active in business activities. If you are in nutrition, become active in non-profit activities in the field of nutrition. 

4. Don’t hesitate to use campus resources

Make sure you know all the resources available to you before you start college. In general, there are usually mentorship programs , writing tutors, or academic tutors who are ready to help you succeed in your studies. Don’t hesitate to use this service because it is included in your tuition fees.        

5. Look for part-time work and internships

Many students feel they don’t need part-time work because it will reduce their time spent studying.

Although this is true, part-time work shows that you are able to manage your time effectively and are responsible so that in the eyes of your employer you are much more mature than someone who never works.    

In my experience, all international students who have successful careers must have worked part-time before graduating.

If there is an internship program, it is also important to be able to take part, because it will help you to fill out your resume so that it can be much more impressive than other job applicants.

6. Follow the rules of etiquette abroad

Make sure you learn the rules of karma and apply them to your life.

For example, holding the door if you see someone behind you, apologizing if you make a mistake or disturb other people’s comfort.

If you have local friends around you, make sure you always speak English even if you are chatting. This is important because you don’t want your friends who don’t speak English to think you are talking to them. 

Respect  and respect other people as you respect your parents. For example, in Canada, Canadians are very proud of their diversity so you will get into big trouble (even legal trouble) if you are racist or make fun of people who are different from you, be it their religion, race or sexual orientation.  

7. Get enough sleep

College requires you to always be healthy and focused. Therefore, make sure you always get enough sleep at least 8 hours a day. Many people think that drinking coffee is enough, but that’s not true. Many studies say that when you don’t get enough sleep, your brain’s ability to learn will decrease drastically.

8. Maintain health and be active in sports

As important as sleep, make sure you always take care of your health and do active sports. This will give you additional energy to always be able to achieve your goals, such as part-time after college or volunteering before college activities. Don’t get sick because abroad it will be much worse because you don’t have help from your parents who can look after you.

9. Prepare winter clothes

Make sure you have the right winter clothes when you study in Canada. Generally, I recommend shopping for winter clothes when you arrive because you want the same jackets that people wear here. Even though winter is cold, with the right clothes you can still be active outdoors in Canada.    

10. Record all your expenses

Because living abroad is quite expensive, make sure you always keep track of your expenses. This will help you to ensure that you will not run out of money which will be a big problem, especially when you live alone abroad.

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