Why You’ll Never Be the Same After Studying Abroad

Students who are able to go abroad to study are fortunate because they will definitely have an experience that can change their lives forever. The advantages and benefits of studying abroad to one’s education and career are substantial. A year or more spent abroad to study is an advantage worth more than the money you’ll spend on tuition and lodging. You will be learning a new culture, immersing in a lifestyle different from your own, learning a new language, and building a global network of friends.

In the November 2018 Open Doors Report released by the Institute of International Education (IIE), over 330,000 students in the U.S. studied outside the country for college credits during the school year 2016 to 2017. Since the 1990s, the number of American students studying abroad has continued to grow. Over one million international college students were studying in the U.S. in 2017 to 2018.

Studying abroad is increasingly essential today. And people will notice the positive changes in you when you return. If you are thinking of spending some time abroad for college credits, here are some of the essential benefits.

  1. It will improve your language skills

You will have many chances to sharpen your language skills through your daily interaction with native speakers. It is something that you cannot duplicate in language classes. It is possible to learn the language quicker. Moreover, you’ll be picking up local jargon and learning better pronunciation by listening to how locals do it.

  1. You’ll adapt to different teaching styles

The style of teaching varies depending on the country. You can adapt to different academic settings when you study abroad. Learning how to adapt can be helpful at work because you will be more versatile.

  1. You’ll be more self-confident 

You’ll learn life skills that you might not know when you’re constantly surrounded by familiar things, such as your family and friends, and other things that you are used to seeing. You’ll learn to be independent as well.

As you overcome the challenges of living abroad on your own, your maturity will improve as you encounter unexpected conditions. Your communication skills get a boost as you converse in another language. You’ll learn to adjust and adapt to the new culture, and become more tolerant. These qualities are applicable in the workplace. You’ll become resilient and self-reliant, as you have to do everything by yourself.

You’ll be able to develop strong management, leadership and critical thinking skills. Your communication skills will likewise improve as you learn to negotiate and speak in public in another language.

  1. You’ll build international connections

You are going to meet other international students at a foreign university, so your global connections will likely increase. They can become your friends for life. Some of them could be instrumental to several career opportunities, such as job offers or internships. You might even become business partners in the future.

  1. You’ll increase your cultural awareness

Meeting other international students will broaden your knowledge of different cultures – the way they act, view things, think, learn, dress, talk, eat, and so on. You will see their traditions and cultural practices, helping you adjust to their different personality and attitude. You’ll be more accepting of people from different cultural backgrounds and share their experiences. Studying abroad broadens your mind and widens your horizon.

  1. You’ll learn to value little things

When you stay at home, you might feel annoyed by the mundane and the routine. Everything is the same, and you might wonder what is unique about your country and the way you live. While studying abroad, you will learn to manage your budget and rely on yourself. You’ll witness other students’ struggle with adapting to a new environment and way of living, not to mention, struggle with finances. You’ll realize that things are easier back home.

  1. You can travel and see more of the world 

Traveling and seeing more of the world is one of the core benefits of studying abroad. It enables you to visit another country and have the chance to see other places, within the country itself or the regions surrounding the country where you are studying. Your local friends can show you the beauty of their country and fantastic locales that other tourists either do not know or do not frequent.

Check out the study abroad program in your college or university. If you qualify, get ready for a once-in-a-lifetime chance that is too good to miss. Likewise, prepare your academic and other documents, so you’ll know if you need transcript translation services.

About the Author:

Sean Patrick Hopwood, CEO and Founder of Day Translations, a language translation services provider, that serves clients in a wide range of industries including education, finance, and government.

 

How To Comfortably Fund Your Studies Abroad

Photo by Liam Anderson from Pexels

How To Comfortably Fund Your Studies Abroad 

Students who study abroad are far less likely to suffer from long-term unemployment, according to a study by the Erasmus Student Network. The study also found that 64 percent of employers consider international experience vital for recruitment. Studying abroad contributes to a well-rounded education, enhanced language skills, and increased cultural awareness. However, despite the benefits of international education, only about 300,000 US students study abroad. One of the main things that prevents this figure from being higher is the cost. Luckily, there are many funding options for those interested in studying abroad. 

Save your money 

One way to fund your studies abroad is by working for some time and saving enough money to cover your education costs. This is usually a great option for people who have already gone to college in the US but are interested in advancing their education. For instance, after getting your first degree at a US university, you can work for two years while saving money to get your MBA at a UK or Australian university. If you choose this route, make sure you save enough to get you through, or you may find yourself struggling to finish the course.

Seek help from financial institutions 

Education is an investment in your future, and just like other investments, a loan can come in handy when you don’t have enough money to cover the cost. In fact, more than 60 percent of American college students graduate with a significant amount of loans. If you are cash strapped come enrollment time, a personal loan is a viable option because, unlike credit cards, it will likely have a lower interest rate and lower upfront fees. They tend to be more flexible, especially when it comes to payments, and you can request a payment term that is in line with what you can afford to pay. Personal loans also have fixed monthly repayment amounts, which are determined before you get your loan. This makes it easier to plan your budget, since the amount you pay every month is the same throughout your loan term. 

Find ways to make money while studying abroad 

Depending on where you are studying, you will discover various ways to make money to cover some of your everyday costs, such as food and transportation. A great way to make money while studying abroad is by getting a job there. This works better when you already have a degree to your name, but even when you don’t have one, you can work with employment agencies to help you find a job in your new country. You also need to do everything required to allow you to work in your new location, such as getting a work visa and other necessary documents. Depending on your school schedule, you can work part-time and study full-time, or work full-time and study part-time. If you choose this route, it’s up to you to find the perfect balance between work and school so that you have enough time to work, do school work, and leave enough personal time to relax and explore your new environment. 

The benefits of studying abroad far outweigh the costs you’ll incur. Studying abroad helps you develop into a well-rounded professional who can adapt quickly to diverse working conditions. It also creates many opportunities and opens doors that would never have opened before, so looking for creative ways to fund overseas studying is well worth the effort.

 

Abroad101 Fall 2019 News for Education Abroad Advisors

Thank you for taking a few minutes to catch up with Abroad101, the study abroad review website.  Around this time 13 years ago, the founder of Abroad101 started on his study abroad experience. Like so many, his story is a powerful tribute to the impact of Education Abroad experience, and like so many, that experience unlocks something that nobody could have predicted at the time.  

Today a company carries on the founding vision of providing students a platform on which to share their story. As an advisor, you call it a program evaluation, a parent considers it as review and the student will hopefully think of it as a capstone. Abroad101 is a company that does just one thing, deliver a platform to advance study abroad. At Abroad101, we have found a way to do this free of charge for the users, drawing support from program providers and host universities in the form of advertising and sponsorship. Here are some ways in which you can support us and the greater study abroad community:

Have You Seen Your Students’ Study Abroad Reviews Lately?

Each day Abroad101.com receives dozens of program evaluations from students that have been invited by either their home university, their provider or their host institution. We publish each review as a complete web page and tally them in listings by program, provider and host institution and also in portals for each home school. As of today, 37,608 student reviews are active on Abroad101 making it the largest source of study abroad stories. Visit the site, enter your school name in the search box in the top menu bar and see what your students have to say!

Moms & Dads Use Abroad101

The target audience for Abroad101 is American college students looking for a semester, summer or short-term abroad. We list third-party, exchanges and faculty-led programs. Parents of prospective study abroad students are a big portion of our traffic. Based on Google Analytics data, we estimate that 20-25% of the visitors to Abroad101 are parents, searching on the keyword “reviews” and trying to learn more about the options their children are considering. 

As an advisor, you will find that your recommendations are validated when prospective students and parents read reviews. Providers will often use reviews in their discussion with students and parents as they find a well-informed student makes for a more successful student. Reading reviews will help parents become more comfortable with study abroad and to help them set expectations on what lies ahead. We hope you’ll mention Abroad101 Reviews in your parent communication and you could also add a link of your Abroad101  “Homepage” on your own website to better prepare all. ( https://www.studyabroad101.com/university_widget )

How to Get Students to Write Reviews?

So often we hear that it is hard to get students to do anything, let alone spend 20-30 minutes on a review. This is especially true when students feel that the activity has no benefit for them.  However, they are inclined to share their stories if the exercise gives them a chance to tell their story, and that is exactly what they do on social media for hours a day! Think of a review as social media for study abroad and a place for students to showcase their story and the process allows them to talk about themselves.

If the student believes the review is good for them, they will generally participate.  That takes some groundwork before they go abroad and as they prepare to return. One idea to get more engagement is to incorporate a review in your re-entry programming and use the review process as a step toward preparing the students to share their experience with others. Just like career counselors who tell students to prepare a good resume for a job search, we hope that study abroad advisors will help their students prepare for their return home by guiding them to submitting a thorough and candid review.

Using Abroad101 as Free Program Review Software

A number of schools already use Abroad101 as their official program evaluation software as it was designed to draw an insightful student expose of their time abroad. These evaluations are great for future advising and orientations and great for the returning students. The service is offered free to American colleges and universities, supported by advertising from program providers and foreign universities. The software offers:

  • Capability to approve/disapprove reviews
  • Invite Tool to improve participation
  • Graphs and Reports to tally student responses
  • Manage an approved programs list
  • Option to list faculty-led programs or select in-house programs
  • Compare your results against others
  • Add custom questions to the standard review (can be kept private for internal use) 

The Abroad101 team is happy to answer any of your questions by email or phone. We also welcome the opportunity to walk you, and members of your staff though the system with an online demo of the back-end features of Abroad101 to see if our free program evaluation tool is right for you. The demo will show how you can see reports, compare your results with other institutions, set pre-approved/recommended programs and add custom questions to the standard Abroad101 review. Abroad101 also has promotional material for you to share with your students, so please let us know how we can help you.

Happy Fall!

Looking for a career after your travels?

Discover 4 ways to start your career in online marketing

All good things must come to an end and that includes your adventures abroad. Whether you’ve been working in Australia for several months, or you’ve been soaking up the local culture in Thailand with friends, there comes a time in every traveller’s life when they have to come back to reality.

The first thing travelers need when they get back home is money. From selling products door to door or collecting money for charities – be wary of any homes with a no soliciting sign outside with these jobs – there are plenty of simple job opportunities that will certainly help boost their finances. But what some travelers look for after months on the road is a new challenge, something to really sink their teeth into, and if this sounds like you, then maybe you should consider a career in online marketing. Read on for 4 ways you can kickstart your new career.

Get to grips with the latest trends

To get ahead in digital marketing, you need to have your finger on the pulse. Digital marketing is always changing and everything you know can change within a couple of weeks. If digital marketing is for you then you need to come to grips with the latest trends and anything that’s up and coming. Keep in the loop by attending seminars and online classes. Keeping one step ahead is always the best approach.

Network, network, network!

In this fast paced, often cutthroat business you need to stand apart and be remembered. Networking will help you build on your career and help you to reach the places you want to go. Connections are everything, so work on building a list of experts you can count on to help with training, ideas, creativity and other aspects that will help you excel.

Create an online presence you can be proud of

A strong online presence is crucial for anyone hoping to land their dream job, regardless of the sector they want to make it in. The first thing any prospective employer is going to do is scour the social media pages of their potential employees, if they don’t like your online image or they cannot find you then they’ll simply place you in the “no” pile and move onto the next applicant. Create a portfolio of the work you’re proud of, link this to your social media pages, create a blog from scratch and fill it with your ideas and your achievements. If you think you have what it takes, then declare yourself.

Focus on analytics

Understanding how well or how poorly a website has performed will be revealed in its analytics. Therefore it’s imperative that you get to grips with them. This well help you focus on what aspects of campaigns need to be improved and what has worked well this time around. There are plenty of online tutorials and information pieces you can find online to help get you started.

Get experience

If you have to do unpaid work – do it! Even if it’s just for a couple of hours a week. Having experience on your resumé will help you stand apart from other candidates.

 

Starting university? Check out these 5 top tips

Have you spent most of your summer preparing for University? It can be a rollercoaster of emotions, excitement, anticipation, fear, frustration and of course worry. It can also feel like you have a huge amount of organizing to get through and so many things to get sorted before you leave. It can be a little daunting, which is why we’ve come up with 5 simple tips that will  make your transition to University much easier.
Good luck!

Get your study essentials sorted
Don’t leave this until the last minute. You’ll undoubtedly have a reading list as long as your arm, so don’t wait to get hold of the textbooks you need. A laptop with all the relevant software is also essential, not only for studying but also for keeping in touch with family and friends back home. When you’re writing essays or dissertations, tutors or examiners will make sure it hasn’t been plagiarized, so it’s also a good idea to invest in software such as a downloadable plagiarism checker and even a proofreading and editing service.

Learn to do things!
For many, heading to Uni means leaving the nest for the very first time and getting their first taste of freedom. It also means that they’re thrown in at the deep end and struggle with the most basic of things, which can have a real negative impact on their Uni experience. To avoid falling into this category, make sure you find the time to learn how to do things for yourself. From doing your own laundry, learning a few basic (healthy) recipes so you’re not simply relying on takeaway and microwaved meals. It’s also a good idea to master the art of making a phone call to the Drs or the dentist…! Something which we all avoid doing!

Get to know your flatmates
Sharing accommodation is pretty terrifying. You’re bound to feel nervous and want to make a good impression. Try not to overthink it too much, take a deep breath and introduce yourself. Remember that everyone is in the same boat…even the person who seems overly confident; they’re probably missing home and just as hopeful to make friends as you are.

Get familiar with your new home
By this I mean your University campus, lecture halls, sports facilities and of course where the Dr/surgery is, bus routes, student friendly bars, supermarkets etc. This kind of knowledge will certainly come in handy when you and your friends are heading home after a night out or when you run out of milk!

Reach out
Feeling homesick or worrying that you’ve made the wrong choice is completely normal. More
students than you think will be feeling exactly the same. But remember, having these feelings
doesn’t mean you’re not cut out for Uni life. Speak to your housemates about your worries, or chat to someone from home. And remember that the Student Union and your tutors are there to help you, so reach out if you’re struggling.

What You Should Know Before Studying In Australia

Photo by Liam Pozz

Over half a million foreign students from more than 190 countries made their way to Australia in 2018, SBS News reports. Australia is popular with foreign students for its robust education, stunning and varied landscape, cultural landmarks, and hospitality. Learning about the various different aspects of studying in Australia will leave you much better prepared for the application process and eventual move. 

You’ll need health insurance

International students in Australia are required to have Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC). The services covered by OSHC vary depending on the insurer and type of plan. A basic plan covers doctor visits, ambulance costs, and select hospital treatments and medications. You may also want to purchase private health insurance, which lets you access public and private treatment, choose doctors and hospitals, and avoid long wait times. To find a good deal, it’s worth getting a health insurance quote from Qantas. Qantas insurance covers private healthcare, while letting you collect points to purchase flight tickets, upgrades, and more. This’ll come in handy on vacations and flights home.

You’ll be able to work

If you want to earn some extra cash to help fund your stay in Australia, you’re in luck. International students with a valid student visa are permitted to work twenty hours a week during the school semester. You’re free to work as much as you want during vacation. However, even though you can arrive in the country ninety days before your course starts, you won’t be able to work until after your course begins. Work required as part of your course isn’t included in the 20-hours-per-week limit. Retail, hospitality, and administration are popular jobs for international students and the Australian minimum wage is very generous — $18.93 an hour. 

You’ll have access to scholarships 

The Australian government spends over $200 million each year on international scholarships. That means you’ll have access to a number of funds which can help make your international experience as affordable as possible. For example, the Destination Australia Program offers over 1000 scholarships of upto $15,000 per student each year to both international and domestic students. You should contact your university to find out what funding options are available to you and how to apply. 

Understandably, moving to Australia seems a daunting feat. However, it’s absolutely worth the challenge. After completing all the applications and arriving in Australia, you’ll be so glad you made the move.

Tips on Finding What Type of Study Abroad Program is Right for You

Types of Study Abroad Programs

Tips on finding what type of Study Abroad Program is right for you.

For American college students the term “study abroad” is a general term that has multiple meanings, the most common being an academic program with ties to the student’s college or university. Study abroad allows a student to live in a foreign country in an apartment, homestay or even on the campus of a foreign university. There are also study abroad programs for high school students and college graduates, some offer resume building work or volunteer experience. Before you make any commitments, you’ll want to understand the definitions of study abroad and consider costs versus benefits of each option.

Study abroad viewed by many incoming Freshman is an essential component to a full college experience. Study abroad seems simple enough: just pick a place to go, find a program to take you there, apply, send your money and you’re all set. When you get into the details it is a lot more complex, because for most students study abroad is not part of the standard curriculum at a college, it is an option. If you take a program through an outside entity, the rules state that credit hours earned outside the student’s home university aren’t treated the same as normal credit hours, so those credits need to be transferred to your academic record. The process is filled with technicalities that will seem a little daunting at first but it is completely worthwhile. When you read the study abroad reviews https://www.studyabroad101.com/programs and hear about all the amazing discoveries and experiences, you’ll understand why so many students say study abroad was the “greatest four months of my life.”  Later in life, many students will tell you that their education abroad experience had the greatest impact on them during their entire time at college.

Education Abroad during Semester Breaks

Some degree programs sequence their courses tightly making a semester away very difficult. For those students universities and program providers continue to introduce creative ways to work education abroad into the college experience. One way is to study abroad when students are normally on a break where the student doesn’t have to disrupt their progress toward their degree and can graduate on time. These off-season programs include:

  • January Sessions or J-Term are 3 or 4 week mini-semesters at the start of the year designed to squeeze a single course into the end of your Christmas break
  • May or Maymester is a single course over a 3 or 4 week mini-semester that follows Spring finals and finished before the usual summer sessions
  • Summer Sessions – 4 to 10 week programs that can offer one to three academic courses, sometimes broken into two sessions (Summer 1 and Summer 2)
  • International Summer Schools https://www.studyabroad101.com/countries/international-summer-schools – Programs at foreign universities, in English for students from all over the world

Semester Exchange Programs versus Education Abroad Providers

If you can study abroad during a normal academic term, many college/universities have recommended alternatives that are exchange partnerships or ties with study abroad provider companies. An endorsed exchange program provides pre-selected courses at a foreign university designed to provide academic credit hours at the student’s home university through transfer credit. Exchange programs allow to stay on your current funding plan, pay to your home university and you pay only for airfare and expenses. Scholarships may be available to help cover these added costs, or they can be packaged into that semester’s financial aid. Check with your study abroad advisor or Financial Aid Office for details.

The education abroad field has a number of third-party study abroad providers who run study abroad programs as their business. They understand what is involved in a successful study away experience and provide overseas staff, amenities and support. Some programs have the classroom component at pre-selected foreign universities where exchange students and provider students may sit side by side. Those provider companies offer a host of extra services and support services and can really help students navigate the complexities of an education abroad experience. For students willing the take the challenge, exchange programs may provide a more affordable option. In Exchange Programs, the study abroad student will be treated like an international student and will likely find themselves in a mix of students from other countries as well as those from the host country. Here is a list of foreign universities that host American students.  Click to view and you’ll see a tab for direct enroll and exchange next to a tab for provider programs. Click and read the reviews to learn more about the pros and cons of each option.

Boost your GPA, Stay on Track with Faculty-Led Programs

Transfer credits are pass/fail. If you want to impact your GPA or earn credit for required courses, you might want to explore programs run by your university. Often these are called faculty-led programs because as the title suggests, faculty-led programs are led by a professor from the home university who is an expert in the course topic and the program immerses students into a deep, hand-on study of the subject. Faculty-led programs are generally groups of students from the home university and the programs often include organized travel, multiple destinations and tours often overseen by the same third-party providers who run semester programs. Faculty-led programs will offer home university credit and are often offered off-season on semester breaks.

Study Abroad Doesn’t Have to be Expensive:

“The cost varies depending on the type and location of the program, the length of the stay, and whether the program is administered through a university or an outside organization. A program can be significantly less expensive, more, or about the same. Study abroad can be affordable. Many colleges and universities are committed to maintaining cost parity; a semester abroad should cost exactly the same as one on the home campus, at least as far as tuition and board.” From – https://www.huffpost.com/entry/busting-the-top-10-study-abroad_b_4175861

Get Approval Before You Go

Before you (the student) commit to any study abroad program, we suggest you speak with your academic advisor, the education abroad office and your Financial Aid office on campus. Know before you go and get all the necessary pre-approvals and forms filed. Study Abroad is filled with red-tape, forms to complete and permissions to get. Consider your transfer credit options, financial aid and degree progression considerations. Ask lots of questions so that you fully understand your options. There’s a program for everyone, once you understand what type of program interests you and how that affect you, we suggest you use the read the reviews to better compare and understand the possibilities.

 

 

 

How Important Is Transcription In The Healthcare Industry?

In the healthcare industry, accuracy is always important, regardless of whether something is being completed by a human or by a computer. So, what has transcription got to do with the healthcare industry? You’ll find that transcription is actually a very important part of this industry and it is what many professionals rely on to make sure records are accurate.

Here, we are going to look at the importance of accuracy in the healthcare industry. Keep reading to find out more about this.

How Is It Used?

You might be wondering who in the healthcare industry relies on this kind of technology. The answer to this question is actually many of the professionals within this industry as transcription is used to create medical files based on conversations with patients.

There are a few ways that this can occur, with one of these involving having someone sit and physically transcribe these meetings on a regular basis. Of course, this does make some room for human error and so AI is starting to become the more popular choice for transcribing in the healthcare industry. The transcription services by Verbit are just one example of special technology that can come in handy for these professionals.

Updating Medical Records

When you visit the doctor, you expect your medical records to be updated to reflect any new or ongoing illnesses that you might have. Transcription in the healthcare industry allows for these records to be updated with ease and this is what makes this element of this industry so important. Doctors can refer back to the records and analyse them thanks to transcription services.

Allowing For Multiple Doctors

Another reason why transcription is important in the healthcare industry is that it can allow for many different professionals to treat the same patient. While you might have a specialist for one thing, you could need to have a nurse look at your records for another. Transcription can ensure that records are up to date and that mistakes are minimised.

Laws On Transcription

Finally, you will find that there are actually laws that state that medical records need to be kept. Should there be any kind of legal conflict further down the line, transcription can come to the rescue of doctors or patients that need to refer back to these records. The law requires medical records and so the healthcare industry puts a lot of importance on transcription services in this case.

Final Verdict

As you can see transcription is actually very important in the healthcare industry due to the vast number of medical records that are created and are updated on a regular basis. The healthcare industry is moving forward with technology and automating this process, but they are always ensuring that they are using the best technology to reduce the risk of error. Without transcription services, the healthcare industry would struggle to stay on top of all of the information that needs to be processed worldwide.

Life After Study Abroad? Consider a career in online marketing

You’ve studied abroad, and if you are like most students you’ve spent a lot of time telling the world about it through social media and review outlets like Abroad101.   Maybe you should consider a career in online marketing.  Not all online marketers work in fashion, travel, finance or retail. Here’s why….

When people think about working in online marketing they automatically assume that they will be working for a large company. All of the large fashion designers, travel firms, finance companies and retailers reach out online to sell their products. But, these days, so does everyone else.

Firms selling signs for example need to be effectively marketed online just as much as a fashion house, hotel chain or retailer does. In the USA, 71% of small businesses already have a website and that number is growing.

Currently, there are around 28 million registered companies in the USA. Of those 22 million are classified as small businesses. That includes local plumbers, mom and pop retailers and crafters selling their wares.

The list of different types of business is an endless one. The travel, fashion and finance and retail industries are huge. But, the number of firms involved in those sectors is dwarfed by the number of companies providing other products and services. As a result, as an online marketer, you are just as likely to end up working for a firm that sells central heating as you are to land a job with a fashion retailer. Therefore, if you are considering a career in marketing it is wise to broaden your horizons a little.

So, many marketing students focus on what they perceive to be the biggest, most lucrative or glamorous industries, when studying for their degree. They spend time working as an intern in those sectors expecting to land a job in those industries when they graduate. Unfortunately, all too often, they are disappointed. The big retailers, fashion and travel industries have plenty of interns to call on and hundreds of applicants for every marketing job they advertise.

So, rather than focusing all of your efforts on securing work in those sectors, it is wise to diversify a little. If you do that, finding work or setting up your own online marketing firm becomes a lot easier.

However, you need niche down a little. For example, you could set your sights on working for health professionals. To be a successful marketer, you need to understand the business you are marketing.

It is essential to be familiar with their customer base. If you do not know how their potential clients think and feel your marketing campaigns will be ineffective. You also need to understand which social platforms they use when looking for products and services. If you focus on a specific niche you can grow your knowledge and be an effective marketer for firms that work in that sector.

Do not worry about not being able to find enough customers. As an online marketer, you can potentially work for any firm on the earth. For example, if you choose to provide online marketing services to dentists you will never be short of work. India has 197,000+ dentists, and the USA has 195,000.

If you are not sure what sector to get involved with, this list will help you to narrow down your options. It covers the USA, but it will still help you to identify what the biggest industries in your part of the world are likely to be.

Abroad101 Providers Update for May 2019

It was thirteen years ago when a motivated, idealistic study abroad student returning to Boston from a semester in Australia came up with the idea that his experience should not be just etched in his mind, it should be shared with the world. 

With some help from some entrepreneurial friends, they started a business with the goal to be the “Trip Advisor for Study Abroad.”  Soon there was a website, some technology, staff and the business known as Abroad101 got started.  You can still see “Review One

Recently we published Review 44554 and are on a pace to publish 6,000 reviews this year.  The business had its ups and downs, having succeeded by keeping its focus on providing students a forum to tell their story and helping universities and providers manage that process in a responsible way. 

Meet Phil, our new General Manager

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Philippos Kollitsis as the new General Manager for Abroad101. 

“Phil” is an experienced, professional businessperson who will be working from the Ledra Capital offices in Nicosia (Cyprus) and New York.  Ledra is the majority shareholder in Abroad101 and remains committed to the future of Abroad101.  Phil has served as CEO and as a Board Member of several companies over the last twenty years and has been an advisor to Ledra.  He too was an international student, earning two degrees from Lancaster University in the UK.   We are excited to welcome Phil on board to our team.

Phil will be at NAFSA and will be stopping by booths.  You can also arrange to meet him at the University of Nicosia’s booth #1131.  We invite you to stop by early in the week to pick up an invitation to UNIC’s 10th Annual Med Party (Wednesday, May 29 – 6:30pm – 9:00pm) and to attend the A101 Happy Hour immediately prior, at 5:30PM, both at City Tap House Penn Quarter on 901 9th Street NW. Register to attend by clicking here.

Do Reviews Matter?

Please take a moment to remember the last time you booked a hotel, chose a movie or show in a theater, picked a restaurant, or bought a product online.  Did a review guide your decision?  If these small decisions were influenced by reviews, then we’re sure you’ll understand how something as complex as an education abroad experience needs reviews. 

Also consider how reviews actually better serve the parents of students.  From our traffic analytics, we see that 20-25% of our web traffic comes from visitors who are 40-50 years old (parents).  We know parents are key in the decision-making process and the feedback we get from parents shows a hunger for candor and interest in using reviews to endorse or approve their student’s program choice.  While you may have testimonials on your website, independent, third-party reviews can be powerful additions to your marketing.

Candor is Key

People come to review sites looking for balance to the always-positive websites, brochures and in-person presentations.  They know things aren’t perfect and want to understand what may be imperfect about a given location, program or host.  Quite often the visitors to Abroad101 are coming to validate their earlier discoveries and because of this, we see a significant portion of our traffic from parents and other adults who support students.  Students may be drawn to the ratings and comments about food and social aspects of a program, while parents see value in ratings and comments about safety and cost.  The 38 questions in the Abroad101 review give everyone something to discuss with plenty of examples to engage in a meaningful dialog and hopefully break some stereotypes about other people and other parts of the world. 

The vast majority of students who study abroad have an overwhelmingly positive experience, which is reflected in the reviews.  Those that struggle and report negative things will actually help future students prepare and set their expectations.  We hope you’ll bring these reviews to the attention of future students so that they can put things in perspective.  Costs in London are high, academics at Oxford are hard, petty crime is rampant in Paris and the food in Ghana is, well, … different.  Knowing these things before a student goes away may make a big difference in how they prepare. 

For Parents, knowing what the risks are is actually reassuring as they can then help their child prepare. When parents inquire to you about programs and ask for referrals, direct them to Abroad101.

Advisors discuss issues over and over, but with reviews the students are learning from their peers and for the schools that require reviews of their students, the  indirect peer advising seems to really help.

Please encourage your students to read the reviews as part of their pre-departure preparation and push them to be candid in their reviews when they return.  Students can start their review at http://www.StudyAbroad101.com/reviews/new

Reminder About the Display Algorithm:

Most visitors to Abroad101 will end up in a directory of programs.  We list programs by city, country, academic program as well as by provider and host university.  For those university partners who select the “approved programs” option, we create a directory as well.  Anytime there is a list, it is ordered based on our proprietary display algorithm which is designed to recognize recent review volume and quality of reviews.  

The algorithm has an impact factor that lessens the impact of older reviews and formulas that reward reviews that contain photos, complete descriptions and a range of review scores.  We do this because Abroad101 is first and foremost a review website.  People come looking for reviews and we want to highlight recent and well written reviews.

Student Inquiries:

Recently we have seen a rise of bots sending Spam email through our inquiry form.  We apologize for this inconvenience and are working to solve this problem; we hope to have it fixed soon.

It’s Free for Schools

We offer Abroad101 to American colleges and universities as free study abroad program evaluation software.  It is fully functional SaaS that manages inviting students to submit reviews, an approval process, approved program lists, graphs and benchmarking reports and the ability to export reviews for further analysis.  Using our unique serial number, schools can also link reviews to their student information systems or TerraDotta.  University partners can also add unique questions to the 38-question base review and also choose not to publish some of them. 

Our business model gives program providers and foreign host universities the option to pay to promote their programs through advertising.  A large portion of that revenue goes to support software services allowing colleges and universities to use Abroad101 without subscription fees.   We ask that our partner schools look favorably upon the organizations who appear in the “Featured Program” positions as a thank you for the free software. 

Added Benefits of Advertising:

If goodwill is not compelling enough for you to support Abroad101, we have designed the site so that advertising on Abroad101 will bring you more inquiries, improve your conversions and raise the brand and visibility of your programs.  Featured Listings start at $500/year and we offer generous volume discounts for multiple programs and display advertising. 

We also give extra emphasis to reviews from advertised programs in Abroad101 ‘s Social Media channels.  We post excerpts of reviews in our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram channels and are open to extra boosts for program news and highlights as part of an advertising package.

Meet Phil at NAFSA or Schedule a Call

If you’d like to arrange a meeting with our new general manager, please email him at philippos@abroad101.com to arrange a good time/place to meet.  

We look forward to re-connecting soon!