Continuing Your Education While Abroad as an Expat
With the cost of education soaring throughout the world, it makes complete sense to think about going back to school abroad while you’re an expat. Many countries across the globe have affordable or even free universities that provide just as good of an education as you’d have in your homeland. However, as a foreigner, you might be worried that you won’t get in or you’ll have to pay extra fees. By taking the time to properly research your options, you’ll be able to find a school that will accept you.
1. Research Schools in Your Area
If you’re committed to staying in a certain country, then your first step is to research all of the schools available to you. One thing you should be looking for is accreditation. Make sure the schools you’re looking at will provide you with a degree that will be valid after you return home. However, if you’re willing to branch out, consider one of the seven countries in Europe where you can get an education for free or nearly free.
2. Find Programs that Are in Your Language
Before wasting time researching schools, make sure that they have programs that are in English, or whatever your first language is. Most schools have at least a few areas of studies that are taught in English, as it’s quickly becoming the international standard. Even if you have a passable knowledge of the language of the country you’re living in, it might be too hard to undertake college-level studies in that language.
3. Look for Expat Financial Aid
Just because you’re a foreigner, doesn’t mean you won’t qualify for any aid. In fact, many schools offer monetary assistance specifically for non-residents. Keep in mind that American financial aid programs typically provide little to no aid for international schools – so if you do need any help paying for school, it will have to come from the university you’re researching.
4. Consider Program Qualifications
At some international universities, your high school diploma might not be enough of a prerequisite. For example, in Germany, some schools will review your GPA and diploma information. If they deem that it does not match German standards, you will have to take a year-long prep course before you can enroll in college. In some cases, you can get out of this if you took AP classes and scored a 5 on them. You might also be able to skip this prep course if you’ve had a year of academic study at the college level.
5. Think About Where You’ll Live
If you’re able to get into a university in the city you live in now, then this might not be a problem, as you can just keep living where you currently do. However, if you’re traveling to a new city, make sure you will be able to find affordable accommodations before enrolling. Since you won’t have much of an income while studying, it’s important to find a place that won’t put you into debt. You may be able to live in campus dorms, but these aren’t always as common as they are in the US.
By keeping all of this information in mind, you’ll be able to find the school that’s right for your unique expat needs. Need more help narrowing down your options and dealing with university requirements? Contact International Citizens Group, Inc., as they can help you navigate educational options in your area.