This week we asked Michael Bittinger, Marketing Coordinator for the Purdue Office of Programs for Study Abroad to tell us a little about how studying abroad in college can help you with your future career. Here’s what he had to say!
“I often tell Purdue students that my job is to convince them to leave campus; to go away as soon as possible and to stay away as long as possible. As Marketing Coordinator for Purdue Study Abroad, I’m responsible for encouraging Boilermakers to seek out an international education.
I visit dozens of classrooms each semester and address thousands a year about our program opportunities. I speak to whomever I can, whenever I can, but regardless of the audience, one element of my presentation remains constant; studying abroad will make you more employable.
To me, the number one reason why YOU should study abroad is simple. It’s because most people don’t. Only 1% of US college graduates have an international experience on their résumés when entering the job market. Now, I can’t think of an easier, more enjoyable, rewarding way to differentiate oneself from the rest. On top of that, employers realize that study abroad students are better prepared for life after college. Those who choose to live in a foreign culture are putting themselves to the test. They are learning what they are capable of; their skills are being challenged and honed every single day.
When it comes to interviewing, nerves are an issue for everyone. Whether it was an on-campus position, internship, or career oriented job in various fields, my international experiences always came up. When they did, I was home free. From there, I could talk enthusiastically and with confidence about a topic I knew was unique and impressive.
Do yourself, and your future boss a favor, study abroad! Information on Purdue study abroad programs can be found on the study abroad website, here. “