Congratulations! You got your acceptance letter from your dream university, for which you labored day in and day out!
Finally, it is your time to reap the benefits of your hard work and get started with your study abroad journey!
However, this new phase of your life also brings new challenges, like living thousands of miles away from your loved ones in an unknown country.
We understand everything will be difficult, especially in your initial days. But don’t get disheartened. Instead, try to come out of your shell and utilize this opportunity to build new friendships and professional relationships.
Not everyone gets the golden chance to study overseas, so you must put effort into making the most out of this once-in-a-lifetime journey.
So check out this article and learn about five beneficial tips you can follow to establish a global network of friends and colleagues!
1. Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
We comprehend that it can be hard to assimilate into a new culture, particularly when your home country and the host country have few things in common!
Besides, you need to know that you may get homesick for a while, combating culture shock now and then.
But if you want to socialize effectively, you must develop an open mindset and willingness to mix up with other people, especially with the locals!
After all, your friends in your host country will serve as your new family and assist you in dealing with problems you may encounter during your stay.
So don’t hesitate to say hi to a classmate or talk with your kind neighbors!
Moreover, you can even ask your friends and relatives if they know anyone residing close to your location in your host country and can try contacting them.
2. Choose to Stay in Shared Accommodation
One of the best ways to meet and befriend other people is by living in shared accommodation. And for that purpose, you can consider picking university dormitories, PBSA, shared flats, or even homestays!
Uni dorms are primarily for first-year undergraduate and postgraduate students as they are ideal for understanding the college and its typical culture, interacting with other students, and making new friends.
On the other hand, living in shared private accommodation like student housing in Chicago is also an excellent way to meet people outside of your college campus. That way, you will have a chance to talk to students from other universities and forge new friendships!
You can also look into Amber, a leading global accommodation booking platform that provides students with the most affordable options for finding their perfect abode.
If you’re planning to shift overseas for your higher studies, you can contact them to receive 24/7 free assistance!
Besides, you can also try opting for homestays as it is beneficial if you have never lived anywhere without your family.
And on top of that, you will get a chance to mingle with a local family and observe the local culture closely!
3. Get a Job
Taking part-time jobs and internships have a plethora of benefits. Besides helping you gain a good amount of work experience and earn some extra cash, you will get a chance to build professional contacts.
Every day, you will have an opportunity to learn something new and interact with many like-minded people.
In addition, the whole working experience will allow you to gain transferable skills that will help you in the future by navigating your way smoothly into the corporate culture.
Also, by the end of your course, when you sit for your campus placements or apply to companies on your own, you will acquire a solid skillset to showcase on your resume and impress your recruiters!
4. Find a New Hobby
It is the perfect time to learn something new that wasn’t possible back in your home country! After all, there are various perks of studying abroad that you should explore and get benefitted from.
Suppose you want to turn your interest into a full-time profession. In that case, your instructors and peers in your hobby classes can introduce you to many professionals in the sector who can offer you various opportunities based on your talent.
So step out of your student housing in Austin, TX, or New York City, and start looking for professional classes like language learning, baking, poetry, etc., nearby.
You can also take assistance from your college professors and neighbors as they will guide you better in finding such classes.
5. Get Involved in Extracurricular Activities
Building long-lasting bonds and professional contacts always begin right from your college campus!
So you must join a hobby club or student society that fits your interest, attend networking and cultural events, participate in volunteer work and workshops, etc.
Meeting these like-minded folks will help spark meaningful conversations where you can discuss ideas and share your knowledge!
In addition, they’ll support your professional development and help you network with the right individuals, including your college alumni and potential employers.