Often, we are confused while selecting the right college for ourselves to pursue the course of our choice. Due to the stress and pressure, we forget to consider few very important details and later it creates a hell lot of a problem. Before applying for a college or University in abroad, you must know some factors. Here’s a list of things that most people forget about while considering admission in a college.
- Eligibility: First and foremost comes the eligibility. Before setting up your aim towards a particular university you must check with their minimum eligibility requirements. For instance if you wish to apply for the prestigious Oxford University, you need to take the British A-levels (consult with British council for the same) or the International Baccalaureate(IB) to be eligible for application. While most of the colleges accept SAT scores, you may also need to sit for TOEFL depending upon the University or the courses being offered.
- Sum up your finances: Studying abroad on Indian currency exchange could be hefty in countries such the US or the UK. You must have estimate of your expenses ready beforehand as to how much you will spend on daily regulars apart from the college fees. With a score of scholarships up for grabs for foreign students, one need not be perplexed with the mounting costs. Universities like the NYU or the Michigan State University offers scholarship ranging from a part to full expenses covered to its courses even to the GRE applicants. Plan your stay well and make most of your money, as every buck counts.
- Arrange all necessary travel documents: It may be needless to say that you will be requiring a valid Passport for travelling overseas and returning back. A student visa may be required for your study abroad. Make sure you have your visa ready well in advance of your departure. You should double check that your visa covers your entire stay, to avoid any unpleasant situations mid-term.
- Alumni inputs are invaluable: Any alumni interaction with the course you are applying to is surely like icing on the cake. It gives you a sense of struggles faced, challenges posed and useful insights into the upcoming course. Talking to the ones who have completed the same program could calm your nerves and make you ready for your life abroad.
- Look for local connections (if any): Having a familiar face in a far off country is a heads up to begin with. It helps you tune your life abroad. Look for local connections among your peers, school alumni, and distant relatives among others. Spread the word out that you are going to pursue a course and someone from your family and friends may have a connection there which will prove to be invaluable.
- Find a Bank: Banking in a foreign a country is an entire paradigm shift from banking in India. You may not be able to use your current debit or credit cards there. To avoid an unpleasant situation such as running out of money, find a bank where you can set up an account there which facilitates international students to open an account. Also make sure that money could be transferred from India on to your overseas bank account in time of some exigency.
- Chalk in the route to the embassy: Well, the embassy is certainly the closest friend you will have there. In any case of trouble, contact the Indian embassy or the Consulate whichever may be the nearest. Keep the phone numbers handy as well. The consular operations are generally functional 24/7.
- Scholarship Opportunities: Studying abroad could be really hefty to the pocket. Thus one must scavenge for scholarship opportunities and grab them at the earliest. There are scores of Universities in the UK, the US and Canada which offers scholarships to foreign students. Contact the respective consulate of the country for the same.
- Local religion and customs: It may be prudent to say that knowing local religion and customs may give you an upper hand in saving you from an awkward situation in the future. The ethnic cultures abroad are a wide shift from what we see in India and avoiding a socially awkward situation would be something everybody would want to forego. Thus read about the local beliefs, practices and customs. Keep a checklist of dos and don ts.
- You can’t plan for everything but keep your guard up: It’s good to keep up your guard and prepare for the coming but you certainly can’t prepare for everything. Enter your new life with an open mind, be up for surprises in the offing and enjoy your stay!
Keeping the above-mentioned points in mind will definitely be fruitful to you while considering a college for admission. Somewhere down the line, you’ll be grateful that you read these because these points will get stored in your sub conscious and you won’t even realize it.