Studying abroad increases resume, career opportunities

By Christian Gollayan

As most students scramble to find that dream job or internship in the U.S., some students are branching out to other countries in order to boost their resumes.

According to a survey conducted by the Institute of International Education for Students, IES, a University-affiliated organization that provides study abroad programs for more than 5,500 college students across the U.S, 63 percent of IES students that have interned or worked in another country improved their career options, while 76 percent said they gained skill sets needed for the job market.

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“Being able to do the same thing you would do here but in a different country is such a different experience,” said Bridget Doyle, outreach coordinator for the University’s study abroad program. “You’re exposed to a lot of the same things that you would do here, but there are different rules of communicating, there’s different protocols … and that really shows flexibility (to employers).”

Doyle advises students to research which field they want to work in to maximize their experience abroad.

“The more you focus, the more prepared you’ll be for that … internship,” Doyle said. “Once you get there you’ll know exactly what you’re going to get out of it, how to enhance it, what it’s going to look like on your resume, (and) what it’s going to do for you, for your career.”

University student Neetu Hariharan, who studied abroad and interned at a health clinic in Dakar, Senegal, believes that she also benefited from the program.

“I felt like it definitely boosted my resume,” said Hariharan, junior in LAS. “I think it shows future employers that I can do multiple things, that I’m capable of doing an internship in a different country in a different language and (be) successful.”

Students don’t have to go through the University’s study abroad program to get that dream job or internship.

Tori Frobish, senior in ACES, networked with professors and students in her college, landing herself a paid internship last summer with Australia’s largest media company, Fairfax Media.

“One of the big things (on working abroad) is the culture: You get to experience how another country works,” she said.

Frobish worked for “The Land”, an Australian agricultural newspaper, and was surprised at the country’s “laid-back work” ethic.

“It was really nice,” she said. “It kind of taught me to relax and look at work differently.”

Frobish received another opportunity to work for Fairfax Media after she graduates, and she’s also hoping to pursue her master’s degree in public relations and advertising in Australia.

Still, whether students decide to work in the U.S. or abroad, the drill is the same.

“Take every opportunity you can,” Frobish said. “Talk to as many people as you can. Have your resume to send just like that.”