5 Indians Studying Abroad Shared Their Experiences Overseas and We Were Overwhelmed!
Following a life-changing decision, when students finally set out on the adventure of studying abroad, s/he carries along with them a sense of excitement. They meet new people, walk on new paths and start experiencing life in a newer way. And these experiences are unique to them.
We decided to understand these experiences and how it is different from what they had experienced in India earlier. And we were pretty delighted with their responses.
“It is all about balancing between studies and extra-curricular activities.” says Anusha De, a student of University College Dublin. Emphasising how life as a student abroad is different from what it was back home, she said the apart from academic support, she received career and professional support.
Shrestha Kashyap, another student of ours, studying at the University of Queensland described her study life as ‘good but a bit hectic.’ But discussing on its rewards, she said the best thing she observed as a student abroad is that ‘hard work is valued’.
“Life abroad is more about living an individualistic life.”
“(As a student abroad) I am responsible for my money which is very hard to earn and very easy to spend. I learnt to manage myself both personally and professionally which is a very important aspect.” says Rishabh Kapur, who was a student at University of New South Wales, Australia. “I learnt to manage myself both personally and professionally which was very important.” he added.
Rohit Choudhary, who is studying at the University of Western Australia, stressed on the work culture abroad and said, “The work culture is more efficient and the study environment here brings out the best in you to work more efficiently compared to India.” “Also, the professors are more friendly and approachable here.” he added.
“Life abroad is more about living an individualistic life.” said Prangana Barua, a student at Monash University, Australia.
We asked the students about the on-campus fun activities and how it differed from Indian colleges and Universities. To this, Anusha said activities were innumerable and it includes massive celebrations during “orientation programmes, movie nights and more than 2000 societies.”
“There’s always something going on in the campus. We have career fairs, market days, and free lunches. There are also ‘get to know each other’ sessions, career counselling and talks on an array of topics, meeting entrepreneurs and scientists among others.” Shrestha said.
Emphasising on the same, Rishabh said, “There are several clubs you can join and be part of.”
The study destinations are cultural hubs, with students from across the globe coming together and sharing different views and outlook towards life. To be a part of such a multicultural zone and see the different ways of life is an exciting opportunity to understand the entirety of humankind, which is sure to enrich the experience of studying abroad.
“One can come across people from different corners of the world. It’s an amazing feeling to meet and get along new people, hear different languages, learn about their ethnicity and rich cultures.” says Shrestha.
Rishabh says being in a multicultural environment teaches people to be compassionate. Rohit on the other hand says people’s perspective of life changes manifold in such an environment.
“People here think Indians are smart which is great!”
There are prejudices about the way of life abroad and if the society would be welcoming enough. And then, there are prejudices about the prejudices. So, to clear things out, we had to ask the students if being from India, they were treated any different.
It was easy for the students to answer this. All of them in unison said, “No. Never.” Shrestha emphasised that many people abroad instead knew about a few things about the Indian states. “People here think Indians are smart which is great.” she added.
These students, far away from their homes, away from their family, do obviously miss their home. We asked them about the thing they miss the most about India.
“Food and my family.” said Anusha. Shrestha says she misses her family, the amazing food, the occasional loud music and the warmth of her people.
“I miss the vibrant culture of India, its beauty in chaos and also its climate and greenery.” says Rohit. Prangana misses her parents, her brother and her dogs along with her friends back in India.
Studying abroad is more than just being the part of the multicultural University. It is about picking up the best from the qualities of the culture they are exposed to and bringing them home to make things better. So, we asked them what that one thing they would love to bring back to India. And the responses were, well let’s put it simply, interesting.
Shrestha says, “I love how people here are so helpful, kind and are law abiding. So if I could get my fellow Indian people to form proper queues in public, that would be an achievement.” “People here value cleanliness. I’d love to bring that habit too.” she added.
“…would love Indians to be aware of Plagiarism and its consequences.”
In this regard, Rishabh said he would love Indians to be aware of Plagiarism and its consequences.
“With my experience I believe Indian universities are more examination-oriented which indirectly forces students to cram learn. It would be great to get rid of all these flaws in the education system and emphasise more on the importance of innovation and creativity.” Rohit said.
Prangana on the other hand believes the whole system needs to pick up a few traits from other countries. She says that unlike India, where the College and University administration is a task, it is mostly simple abroad.
With their personal experiences abroad, we asked them about the one advice they would give to the students who are planning to study abroad.
“Have faith and work towards your goal.” Anusha said.
Shrestha called this a once in a lifetime opportunity where the students get a chance to show themselves as Indians with pride to the world. “You will get to meet people from different cultures, taste different food, travel and explore beautiful places and most importantly you will learn to work hard and value yourself because you’re all on your own.” she added.
“You already have guts when you step out of your country. Just need to realise your strength and keep moving forward. When life gets tough, have some pizza. You’ll be alright. Cheers.” Rishabh said, adding that he would love to meet any new student from India who is on their way to Australia. “They should give me a call when they come. It’s good to know someone in the city when you move here.” he said.
Rohit emphasised on the importance of developing their writing and speaking skills. “The rest, they will learn automatically.” he added.
According to Prangana new students should be prepared for the challenges. “Especially in the first semester when by the time you adjust to the new environment, it is already time for assignments and the semester examinations.” she added.
Note: Couple of names in the story have been changed on the request of the students.