You have surely heard about the Erasmus program which enables international mobility to university students. Specifically, through the Erasmus scheme, you get the chance to study abroad between three and twelve months in another European country and also receive a grant that will help you with the costs.
Amazing opportunity, right? However, not all European students are aware of the numerous benefits they could get out of an Erasmus exchange study programme.
So here are the reasons why you should not just consider, but actually apply to an Erasmus study programme.
1. You get to travel, live and discover a new place
If you ask anyone what they enjoy doing in their spare time, I guarantee that the most common answer will be travelling. Can you blame them? It’s probably a part of the answer you would have given yourself as well. After all, who doesn't enjoy seeing new places, discovering new cultures and making new friends all around the world?
The only problem is that if you wait for too long to do all of these, well, that's when it gets more complicated. In a few years, you might find yourself stuck into a routine or another: not being able to leave because of work, not having enough money to do it, being held back by a family and so on.
So you should take advantage of the opportunity to travel and gain international experience whenever you can; the earlier, the better!
Check out some popular countries for Erasmus exchange programmes according to Erasmus Student Network and the European Commission:
2. Learn a new language
Although the whole point of the Erasmus scheme is that you don’t have to know other foreign languages apart from English (since Erasmus courses will be taught in English), getting to live in a foreign country for a while is a chance to enhance your language skills.
Universities will offer language classes to international students and many times, you can attend these classes for free. Additionally, you can learn by yourself by simply communicating with local people or asking your peers to teach you their native language. In exchange, you can also teach them your native language as well if they’re interested.
Examples of universities – part of the Erasmus Mundus partnership program:
- Coventry University
- Ghent University
- Chalmers University of Technology
- University of Wroclaw
- University of Lisbon
3. You get financial support during your Erasmus
This is an important aspect not many students know about. All Erasmus students receive a study grant, and the amount usually depends on your home country and the country of destination, based on average estimates regarding living costs in the specific country. Normally, this grant won’t cover all your expenses, but it is a great help that will make your Erasmus period quite an affordable study experience.
4. Upgrade your CV
From an academic point of view, Erasmus programmes offer you an additional educational and cultural experience you wouldn't otherwise be able to gain. You might have heard this too many times, but it does enhance your CV and it does look great in it, as a lot of employers will choose graduates who have some kind of international experience.
If you undertake such programmes, you will definitely have wider employment opportunities after graduation.
5. Re-discover yourself
Studying abroad changes you; being part of a new society in which you'll discover new habits, learn new things and re-educate yourself is an amazing experience. So the person you'll become will be more open towards new, more tolerable and in general more appreciating about life. Because Erasmus is much more than just studying abroad and discovering new people; it's about rediscovering a better version of yourself.
Studying abroad is a lifetime opportunity!
There is an incredibly big list of reasons why you shouldn't have second thoughts about taking the plunge and go study abroad. First of all, it really is a once in a lifetime opportunity, as this is one of the few moments in life when you're being offered the freedom to travel without being questioned and doubted about your reasons to do so and also be offered financial support.
Being an Erasmus student has lots of advantages, one of them being able to move from a country to another without anyone taking a second look at your nationality.