If you’re a university student and are waiting for something big to happen in your life, then I suggest you consider an internship abroad. Personally those months I spent in London, aged 22...changed my life.
I often think that my career and life would have been totally different if I didn't take the plunge over 10 years ago and moved, suitcases and fear, in the British capital.
Since I know how valuable that experience for me was, I've decided to collect here 10 reasons why you need to do an internship abroad.
1 Live abroad
First and foremost. Nothing can expand your mind and view more than living in another culture. Additionally, it's likely you'll travel more while living abroad. Let's say you move to Paris from New York, you'll surely want to visit London, Rome and Barcelona while you are in Europe!
2 Stand out from the crowd
Most graduates think to be special simply because they have a great degree or studied at a good university. The truth is that like you, there are a million other excellent students. On paper (and in reality) you are all the same for a potential employer. So what can you do to stand out from the crowd?
An international experience.
Studying or working abroad sets you apart from the crowd. In fact, having an internship abroad on your resume will give you higher chances to be called for that interview.
3 You’ll make friends from around the world
Living abroad is a full-on experience but there is something incredibly special about making friends from all around the world. You will see that everyone studying or doing an internship abroad is keen on meeting new people and learning about different cultures. Once you go home, you'll realise that having an international group of friends also means you have a huge number of friends to visit whenever you decide to travel to their country.
4 You’ll be on a more international career path
Once my internship in London was over, I was offered a permanent job in Milan. After a couple of years, I interviewed for jobs in Paris, Amsterdam, New York and Madrid. Why? An internship abroad sets you up for a more international career because employers understand that you'll most likely fit in better than candidates who've never left their home countries.
5 You’ll learn to speak a foreign language
There are many benefits coming from doing an internship abroad and the biggest one was becoming bilingual (my Cambridge's IELTS results say I am :D). Since that, many years have passed, but I could have never imagined my life without speaking English fluently. All the travels I've done, all the people I've met and the stories I've heard and told....it would have been a totally different experience. Not to speak about my past career and current lifestyle: totally impossible. I currently work with clients from all around the world and sell stationery to every country in the world. Without knowing English? Absolutely impossible.
6 You’ll become a true world's citizen
Travelling is already a very enriching experience, but living abroad is on another level. Settling in a new country, city, having to start from scratch will have a huge impact on you and your life and I'm pretty sure you'll become a true citizen of the world because you'll understand that despite the many differences, there also a lot of things that unites us.
7 Build on your confidence
As you become a citizen of the world, you will also learn many things about yourself and others, ultimately building your confidence and becoming more and more self-assured and positive about your future.
8 Develop a global network
As with the international friends you will make, you'll also develop a network of colleagues, managers and professionals from all around the world which will most likely become handy in the future.
9 Improve your adaptability
One of the hardest things to learn is to be able to adapt to different situations. There is one, simple way to learn this skill very fast: live and work abroad.
As mentioned above, doing an internship abroad will open up your mind and will also help you to increase your flexibility, your understanding and ultimately, your adaptability to different situations and difficulties.
10 You'll become independent
Deciding to go and live abroad for a few months or years can be scary, but as I've already written many times, it will be the best choice of your life. Another plus of doing an internship abroad is that you will really become independent as you will most likely be all alone in a foreign country.
Once you have done an internship abroad, you'll be able to do anything else in your life.
Read more about finding a job/internship and Italy below:
The Magic CV Template to Find an Internship Abroad
Best Ways to find an Internship Online
How to Find a Job in London as a Foreigner
Expat Diaries: Lessons Learned in My First Year in London
7 Things Italians Deeply Hate About Italy
6 Reasons Why Living in Italy Ruins You Forever