Some frequently asked Question Contd.
Will the student be able to communicate without having a firm grasp of the language?
It is possible that wherever the student goes, he/she will be able to find someone that speaks even a little English, but it is always beneficial for the student to make every effort to learn the local language, or at least some key phrases, as it will enable him/her to make the most out of the study abroad experience. If your child is not comfortable with the language, a program should be selected where the courses are taught in English. Another option is to enroll in an intensive language class prior to departure.
Who should I meet with before I go?
Study abroad advisor –
She/He can tell you what you need to know and who you need to see. Their job is to make sure you are prepared for your experience and that you will gain the most from your study abroad program. They probably would be able to tell you exactly where to go. They also might be able to help you with travel plan the fastest way to get your visa and flight reservation done.
Mom and/or dad –
They might not be financing your adventure but its still key to keep them in the loop. You probably want to explain how this experience is integral to your degree program, how the experience will enhance your resume and insure a large job upon graduation. Its also important to keep the old folks happy, as they will probably be taking care of logistical concerns while you are out of the country.
What will the food be like?
Chances are, the food in the country abroad is not going to be like the food many of us are used to eating at home. Although this can be a wonderful part of the experience, it may be difficult or even painful for some. Be sure to follow the host school or host family’s guidelines about what precautions to take when sampling local foods and drinks. (Note: in areas where it is not safe to drink the water, remember that ice, fruit juices and even vegetables and fruits washed in the water should be avoided if at all possible.) Your student will be surprised, however, to find that many popular fast food chain restaurants from the United States can also be found all over the world!
How can we keep in touch with the student while they are abroad?
Postal mail, telephone, fax and email are all available means by which to communicate with students abroad.
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