There are a lot of deciding factors that will help you determine what study abroad program is right for you. When I was looking for a study abroad program, I originally wanted to spend a semester in Italy. After some thinking, I realized I didn’t want to miss out on a whole semester at Ole Miss. I was also worried about finding classes that would work for my degree plan so I could still graduate on time.
After some research, I knew I would want to travel and see more countries during my time in Italy. However, I was nervous about that idea because I wasn’t familiar enough with Europe to travel on my own. When I heard about International Business Seminars, it seemed like the perfect fit. Here are a few deciding factors that led me to my final decision:
The Deciding Factors:
Destination & Travel:
The multi-destination attribute is what really caught my attention. I attended the Summer Europe program where we visited 6 countries in 23 days. Traveling seemed so easy because IBS planned everything and organized your itinerary.
In every city we visited, we were given a metro pass to get around. I had never navigated a metro system before but by our last city, navigating seemed like a breeze. I gained a whole new level of confidence when it comes to traveling by train or subway.
Being a rising senior, I felt it was important for me to have an internship over the summer. Even with attending the Summer Europe program, I was able to have a full internship for the remainder of the summer. Plus, I think the IBS program helped me secure an internship. Companies were so understanding of a late start after I explained what it was for.
Business Experience & Knowledge:
The fact that an IBS program is an opportunity to obtain real-life business experience was a deciding factor in itself. You can hear about something a million times but it completely changes when you experience it for yourself. That’s what happened to me when I learned about international production and then experienced all of the automation and inventory processes at BMW in Germany.
I could have never learned what I learned through IBS in a classroom. All of the company visits gave me a better understanding of the global marketplace, the different cultures in each country, and how every decision a company makes has a strategy behind it. The business experience and knowledge I gained through this program will stick with me forever.