Study Abroad for Non-College Students: What You Need to Know

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Can I study abroad as a non-college student?

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

Perhaps you studied abroad in college or missed out on the opportunity for one reason or another. Fortunately, there are several study abroad programs for non-college students at any age or academic level. Nontraditional applicants may want to pursue a program for cultural immersion, to learn new skills or gain another experience in place of traditional coursework. Meanwhile, empty nesters may opt for a grand excursion living and learning elsewhere. Here’s everything non-college students should know about studying abroad.

1.   Travel Can Still Be Affordable

The reality is that traveling and studying abroad is costly, but there are multiple ways non-college students can fund their learning without breaking the bank. Tracking your expenses and creating a weekly or monthly budget is an excellent way to make sound financial decisions during your trip. You can also save money by choosing a low-cost destination. Why study abroad in an expensive city like London when you can have just as great of a time somewhere relatively affordable like Portugal or Bali? Although it might prove challenging, seeking employment — such as teaching English to non-native speakers — while studying is another option. Study abroad as a gap student to grow academically and explore a foreign country and new exciting cultures.

Find out more about studying abroad as a Non-College student with these Gap Year programs!

2.   There’s an Opportunity for Language Immersion

Studying abroad as a non-college student can provide immersion opportunities if you want to learn a new language or have the basics down. Multilingualism is an excellent skill to have in business. For instance, outside of Portugal, Portuguese is also the native language of Brazil — which has one of the largest economies in the Americas. Other people find communicating with locals in their native language opens doors to new social connections. It also produces cognitive stimulation and an enhanced belonging in the world.

3.   Study Abroad as a Non-College Student Looks Good on Your Resume

Learning a second language benefits business professionals. However, non-college students also learn cultural awareness, adaptability, self-sufficiency, problem-solving skills, cultural empathy, and confidence. The experience and skills you gain from studying abroad look especially good on your resume. Depending on your area of study and the destination, such as Asia, you may find new employment opportunities. For example, South Korea has eased its international visa processes and developed training programs to expand its lagging tech industry; the nation expects nearly 15,000 openings for software developers in 2022.

Read more:

5 reasons you shouldn’t be scared of studying abroad

Seoul South Korea study abroad culture
Non-College students can also apply for a full degree abroad, for example, in Seoul, South Korea!

4.   You Can Learn More About the World

Reading books about other countries’ histories and cultures isn’t the same as walking the corridors of historical museums or visiting ancient landmarks. Instead, those who travel receive a hands-on learning experience inaccessible to most people. Travel for non-college students is also unrestricted — many take advantage of cheaper flights to neighboring nations. You’ll adopt new world perspectives and outlooks on life, from laying your eyes on the world’s natural wonders to participating in renowned international events and local activities. Nontraditional study abroad is also a chance to learn more about yourself and others as you adapt to your host country’s customs.

5.   Program Lengths Vary

Study abroad programs vary in length. Some providers offer a week-long or three-month stay for those who can’t commit to a long-term program. On the other hand, one-year programs are more conducive to building language proficiencies or growing accustomed to another culture. Others might postpone their study abroad until later when they can extend their trip for as long as possible. If you’re looking for overseas employment during your studies, many multinational companies consider those planning to stay longer over individuals on short-term excursions.

Do you want to visit a Summer School Program for Non-College students? Find out more!

6.   It’s Ideal for Adventure-Seekers

Risk-takers and adventure-seekers will most enjoy trying new activities that push their limits. The world is full of exciting happenings and explorations to fulfill your thrill-seeking needs. Whether you visit Spain in July for the running of the bulls or zipline through Costa Rica, studying abroad as a non-college student delivers access to things you can’t do elsewhere. You may also discover new interests, such as hiking or scuba diving, on your days off. Of course, don’t forget to take plenty of photos — global adventures always make a great story when you reunite with family and friends.

rice fields Bali Indonesia
Non-College students can also do their undergraduate degree in Bali, Indonesia, at Undiknas University!

7.   Travel Is Good for Your Mental Health

Traveling to foreign places can be anxiety-inducing, but studying abroad can benefit your mental health — especially as you age. Studies have shown that engaging in positive, independent travel experiences may support psychiatric management for patients with chronic mental health conditions. Additionally, different surroundings, social connections, and travel experiences increase sensory stimulation—a potential benefit for those susceptible to dementia. Lifelong learning, like cardio, needs the brain to be used all the time to keep it in good shape. The more knowledge-engaged you are, the healthier and happier you will be.

Study abroad for Non-college students

You’re Never Too Old to Study Abroad

No one ever truly stops learning, and study abroad programs are for everybody. You don’t have to enroll in college and pursue a degree to attend school in another country. You also don’t need to be well-established in a career to continue your education abroad. Adults of all ages and educational and professional backgrounds are welcome to apply. Whether for a summer or an entire year, you can gain worldwide experience and enrich your life through culture and learning.

Seoul, South Korea city modern architecture
Visit the Summer School Program at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul, South Korea

Do you want to know more about studying abroad in exotic places?

Asia Exchange is a Finnish company providing study abroad opportunities in Asia Pacific for students worldwide. Want to get travel tips and new blog posts straight to your inbox? Subscribe to our monthly newsletter! If you have any questions about studying abroad, feel free to contact usWe’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

The blog post was written by Carolina Jacobs, Managing Editor at Classrooms!