How a Study Abroad Program Can Enhance Your Nursing Experience

Nursing professionals are an essential component in the healthcare field.  For many students it’s the fact of helping others, while for other students it’s about making a difference when the final decision to study nursing is made.  For other students it’s about contributing to research and the advancement of the field of nursing. While for some students, a nursing career is a family tradition that extends for many generations.  With the variety of nursing degrees and licenses available from associate, undergraduate, and graduate degree programs, nursing has become a popular career for many students.  With the nursing field on a steady rise, it is essential students are equipped with the skills to meet the challenges of the industry, and if leadership in nursing is a priority, students must learn to diversify themselves.

Study Abroad Programs Enhance Learning

Looking for ways to advance your nursing career?  Maybe you have begun researching the opportunities available through study abroad programs that can get you to the next level in your education.  Study abroad programs have become popular for many students in enhancing their nursing experience.  For many students, a study abroad program is an experience of a lifetime where students are able to build personal skills while also enhancing their professional skills.  Although it may be challenging working in a new and unfamiliar environment, the experience has proven to be priceless for many students.  Needless to say, a study abroad program enriches the learning experiences for students.  According to the U.S. Department of Education, study abroad programs significantly contributes to a student’s educational experience such as improving foreign language competency and enhancing critical thinking skills.  Through study abroad programs students are able to build skill sets and values impacting a student’s ability to contribute to a global economy.

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Study abroad programs introduce students to many aspects of the nursing field.  Although curriculum and practicum remains to be a main component of these programs, study abroad programs encompass other components that are significant to the study abroad experience.  In order to capitalize on the many benefits your nursing education offers, it may be beneficial to study abroad.  Here are some of the many benefits nursing study abroad programs offer:

Cultural Awareness – Study abroad programs introduce nursing students to various cultures and religions allowing students to gain a better understanding of healthcare needs as it relates to the culture and the country.

Builds Partnerships – Through study abroad programs, practitioners across the globe are able to network to build an international network to enhance research, establish relationships and develop employment opportunities for nursing professionals.

Increased Sensitivity to Needs – Nursing students are able to increase self-awareness and address personal misconceptions through study abroad programs.  Furthermore, students obtain a firsthand experience that introduces students to customs and enhances language proficiency.

Break Down Barriers & Misconceptions – Enrolling in a study abroad program builds competence, knowledge and understanding within students.  This in part will assist students in becoming competent practitioners.  Students have access to a wealth of resources that will aid in building knowledge and understanding that can be used in practice.

Global Perception – When students enroll in study abroad programs, they are able to bridge the gap between regions and cultural differences.  By doing so, nursing students are able to bridge the communication across cultures and encourage diversity.

Enrolling in a study abroad program may be just what you need to give you the competitive edge within your nursing career.  As more and more students recognize the many benefits study abroad programs have to offer, more students will begin pursuing study abroad opportunities.  Keep in mind, each student’s experience in a study abroad program will differ. Nevertheless, there are many advantages to enrolling a study abroad program that can prove to be very beneficial to your education and career.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, by the year 2020 Registered Nursing jobs are expected to increase by 26 percent and Licensed Practical Nurses and Licensed Vocational Nursing jobs are expected to increase by 22 percent.