Returning Home from Studying Abroad
Welcome back! Although you have returned from your study abroad term, your learning experience is not quite over. You will continue to benefit from your time abroad for many months and years to come, and your experience will enrich your understanding of the world.
The Baruch Study Abroad Office not only strongly encourages Study Abroad Veterans like yourself to remain in contact with our office, but also offers you the opportunity to convey to others your own enthusiasm about your experience, and to help us better prepare them for theirs.
The experience of living in a different culture, especially over a period of several months, frequently has a profound impact upon the way you view yourself, your values, and the home and college life routines you will encounter when you return. Just as you probably experienced some aspects of “culture shock” when you went abroad, you should also expect to experience some “reverse culture shock” when you return. Your time abroad will have made you personally more independent and enhanced your self-confidence in dealing with new situations. You may yourself recognize some of the changes you have undergone, but they will be probably be very clear to your family and close friends.
Being exposed to a different culture, and to unfamiliar academic and political institutions, and merely talking to local residents and students all will have combined to broaden, and perhaps change, your perspective on the world you left behind. This is a perfectly normal reaction, and one which you can and should turn to your advantage, not only in your academic work but in preparing yourself for your chosen career.
Understand that your friendships and relationships might change as a function of your new experiences. Explore new places and people with whom you can share your international experiences. Seek counsel from academic advisors, other study abroad “veterans,” and other supportive faculty and staff.
Accept the reality that re-entry is a time of transition! Learn ways to take care of yourself and ease into your surroundings.
We at the Study Abroad Office want to make sure that you receive proper credit and, if applicable, grades, for the work you have done abroad. If you have had all your courses approved, received your Study Abroad Permit, and followed all procedures required for any changes made to your program. Please be sure that you have arranged for at least one copy of the transcript for your work abroad to be sent to the Director of Study Abroad in the Study Abroad Office at Baruch, even if a transcript is also sent directly to the Baruch College Registrar’s Office.
See Transcripts for more information and guidance.
Do you have things to say about your study abroad experience? We want to hear them!
All responses to the online program evaluation are confidential, although you may provide your name if you would like us to follow up with you about your comments. You may also choose to share your comments with future applicants.
The Study Abroad Office will organize events that bring together students who have recently studied abroad. These events are designed to allow us to learn more details about your own experience abroad, to hear your evaluation of the quality of the program you studied on, and to offer you a forum where you can share and exchange views with other students on your experience. We will be contacting you via email about these events.
Study Abroad Fairs
Every semester the Baruch Study Abroad Office sponsors a Study Abroad Fair. The Fair provides students a chance to speak with representatives of study abroad program sponsors about the opportunities they offer, and allows the Study Abroad Office to showcase the exchanges it has with our partner universities. Whether you participated in one of the Baruch or CUNY exchanges, or studied abroad through an approved program sponsor, we would like to encourage you to participate in the Study Abroad Fair. As recent veterans of a given program, you possess information that would be invaluable to prospective applicants. The Study Abroad Office will be contacting you to ask you to attend the Study Abroad Fair, and we hope that you will agree to do so.
Just as you had a pre-departure orientation before you left and met some of the previous study abroad students, now it is your turn to be the expert. The Study Abroad Office organizes a pre-departure orientation each semester for outgoing Baruch exchange students, and will be contacting you to participate or contribute your own thoughts and experiences.
Contributing to the Study Abroad Blog
The blog of the Weissman Center for International Business welcomes blog contributions from students currently abroad, or who have returned and have stories, photos, or information that they would like to make available to the Baruch Community. You can access the blog at here.
One of the best ways to deal with re-entry adjustment is to find a way to continue developing your new knowledge, skills and attitudes. There are several resources at Baruch to help you with this.
Global Student Certificate Program
The Weissman Center for International Business offers a Global Student Certificate program for Baruch College students. This certificate offers accepted students the opportunity to participate in a number of globally oriented events, to gain intercultural training, and to receive a certificate of completion, which is a valuable addition to anyone’s resume. As a study abroad veteran, you are a natural candidate for this certificate program. Please consult the Global Student Certificate website for more information.
Working or Interning Abroad
The Weissman Center for International Business offers an Internship Placement Program that can help match you with a domestic or an international internship. The program seeks students who have an interest in gaining practical work experience in a rapidly evolving global marketplace.
Baruch has dozens of clubs and student organizations dedicated to international students and global issues to help Baruch students who have studied abroad and international exchange students who are currently studying at Baruch. Other student organizations on campus also promote international exchange. By becoming an active member of one of these clubs, you can meet students who share your interest in your host country or even keep your language skills fresh. We encourage you to seek out such organizations, because you have a lot to contribute. Browse the list of clubs at the Student Life website.
International experience can be an advantage when looking for a job, but you will need to make its relevance known to your prospective employer. You will certainly want to include your study abroad experience on your resume. It is most commonly placed in the “education” or “related experience” section.
Employers may not realize that study abroad returnees possess certain skills and traits that are highly valued. In your resume or cover letter, or during your interview, highlight accomplishments and transferable skills from your study abroad time.
However, it is important to know how to leverage the knowledge and skills you acquired or enhanced by studying abroad in a way that will work to your best advantage. The website StudyAbroad.com has useful brief articles that offer practical advice on how to work your study abroad experience into the cover letter and résumé and how to present it in a job interview.
If you are thinking about applying for a job or internship outside of the US, be aware that different countries have different norms and customs for how a cover letter, resume or CV should be organized. To help you develop a document tailored to your target country, the Weissman Center has a resource, “Global Resume and CV Guide,” which you may consult, or you can browse the Internet for websites and books on the topic of international working customs.