Studying abroad

In college, many students take the opportunity to study abroad for a semester, but it is not as commonly talked about or done in high school. Should students be made more aware of study abroad opportunities?

Danielle Blyn, Sports Editor

With traveling becoming more open and college decision season upon us, many are reminded of studying abroad opportunities. They are not very seen in high schools but are often pushed in colleges as a way for students to further their learning and cultural experiences. 

Most high schools don’t advertise, or even so much as offer, study abroad programs for their students. Yet, many kids know of such programs as they are a very popular discussion on social media and make peers want to travel. Some schools allow study abroad programs for the summer; however, this does not allow students to learn anything school-related for those three months. 

Some people worry because they are often required to learn or know an entirely different language to be successful in these types of programs. Thus, it makes being able to attend these types of programs much more difficult. It is also more stressful as many high school students will be living away from home for a long time, for the first time.

So the question is, should these study abroad programs be made more readily available to high school students than they are right now? Opportunities for studying abroad are rarely talked about and only mentioned as a student coming to Capo rather than a Capo student going somewhere else. But, if a student found a program and proved they would continue their learning on the track needed to graduate, would they be able to? 

Many students say that they would take the opportunity to do a study abroad or foreign exchange program in high school if given the opportunity. Some said, however, that they wouldn’t take the opportunity until college as it is seen as more valuable there, and there are greater opportunities to travel to more places.

“I think if it were in a group setting, I would definitely go during high school,” junior Sabrina Bilt said. “However, I would rather wait until college when it will fit my major better to go where I want to go.” 

Study abroad and foreign exchange programs are ways for many students to grow themselves and continue learning and expanding their education. And while it may not be the best thing for high school students to do, as it could set them back rather than move them forward, programs like these should be more advertised. 

There are many programs out there that allow people from all over to travel to different places through their school. Some parents are usually worried about who their child would stay with; however, foreign exchange hosts are generally very accommodating and properly vetted before the process. Students will not only get the benefit of experiencing different cultures and living in a new place, and on top of that, they can also begin the process of independence.

High school study abroad programs are not very well known, though they exist at the click of a button on Google. So with many students researching more and seeing more people doing foreign exchange online, it is guaranteed to become more talked about within schools.  While it might not be the best for every high schooler, if they can find the right program, it could be the right fit for them to do during their high school years rather than waiting until college.