We strive to present a transparent blueprint of expected expenditure to students and parents as academic consultants who engage in daily discussions about the dollar—and find ourselves riding similar waves of uncertainty! Is there a way to stop inflation? Will the sudden rise in the value of the dollar reduce interest in international education? The possibilities are limitless.
However, dealing with inquisitive young minds has taught us how to solve problems. For us, an education overseas consultancy is synonymous with a problem-solving organization. In fact, we are almost constantly engaged in real-time problem solving. As a result, the methods listed below not only defeat inflation, but also familiarize students with its past, present, and future.
Contrast the two sentences below. Which one has the most impact on you, and why?
Sentence 1: “I want my child to study at a reputable US university abroad.”
Sentence 2: “I want my child to study abroad at a reputable US university 13,510 kilometers away, where I will pay anywhere between $65,000 and $75,000 per year.”
It must be the latter, because it leaves a rather bitter aftertaste about the expectations that most students or parents have regarding education abroad. It is important to understand that catchy taglines and glossy photographs on websites discussing ranking and reputation provide only a very superficial perspective. For example, according to government data, 1.33 lakh Indian students will have left India for higher education abroad by March 20th, 2022. In 2021, the figure was 4.44 lakh; in 2020, it was 2.59 lakh; and in 2019, it was 5.86 lakh. The majority emigrated to the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
Even those who received generous scholarships were concerned because many of them did not cover living and personal expenses. Such issues are often difficult to address for young adults who are moving to a completely new location. There is no doubt that academic institutions are charging today’s students significantly more for higher education abroad than previous generations. According to a recent report by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce report, the average living expenses for an undergraduate degree increased by a whopping 169% between 1980 and 2020.
Furthermore, tuition fees have risen significantly, particularly in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Certain specialization courses are now frequently priced far beyond what students and parents can afford. There is a lot more to Indian students going abroad, and that “lot more” includes the cost of one’s physical and mental well-being.
Naturally, this entails meticulous financial planning, investment, and focusing one’s resources on policies that promise high returns. Going abroad and studying is no less than constructing one’s own city, and thus it cannot be completed in a single day. As families dream and plan elaborate weddings for their children, a glowing aspiration to go abroad deserves the same level of attention—if not more.
As previously discussed, planning one’s education overseas is an investment on multiple levels, both emotional and financial. As a result, it is critical to focus one’s time, money, and efforts on reputable businesses that provide guaranteed returns. In other words, one must ensure that one’s study abroad plans are goal-oriented, with the primary goal of being accepted into a prestigious college.
Going abroad for the sake of going abroad or sacrificing educational quality by not caring whether one attends a tier-1 or tier-2 school are both big no-nos. More often than not, the prospect of studying abroad is viewed as a recreational activity. Going abroad for tertiary education, on the other hand, is not a vacation.
It is a time of academic rigor and diligence that will shape the rest of one’s life. So deciding between four years of leisure and forty years of a purposeful, well-channeled career network is critical. Only when the presence and availability of this option are recognized, realized, and actively pursued will the study-abroad plans and aspirations bear fruit.
When it comes to financial security when applying for higher education overseas, international study abroad, or travel abroad – it is important that we investigate and investigate all avenues of financial support. Almost all reputable banks now offer options such as SIPs, Mutual Funds, and education loans. Companies and startups are also developing plans to help with overseas education. It is best to learn everything there is to know about these systems before investing to reap the most benefits later on.
The key mantra to success in the study-abroad process—perhaps the only mantra—is to “embrace an eagle’s eye view, analyze, and then decide.” In contrast to most other perceptions, which are biased and skewed, an eagle-eye view is considered unbiased, neutral, and holistic.
Before deciding on a university or even starting the application and shortlisting process, it is critical to examine the student scenario from the top down, taking into account all possible variables such as finances, internships, institution reputation, research, ranking, and so on. All of the variables mentioned above must be in sync for the student to be able to walk the path to their desired college.
If these variables do not align, a student’s study abroad dreams may lose meaning and self-assigned purpose may crumble. This will create a herd mentality, and the student will no longer want to travel abroad for herself; the goal will be to follow the crowd, the typical adolescent fear of missing out. Quality and long-term success will take a back seat here. To avoid being trapped in such a situation, students should look into institutions in India as well.
More often than not, students applying to and aspiring to study abroad see opportunities in India through a negative lens, simply because they wrongly attribute a certain glory to education abroad. As a result, it is critical for students and parents to examine possibility and probability with a holistic eye—one that is objective and free of the glory bias.
When Frank Sinatra said about New York, “if I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere,” he didn’t mean for you to make it your be-all, end-all of academic dreams, we promise! Especially among parents who want their children to stand out in every room they enter, admission to an international university is announced as “The child is going to study abroad,” without mentioning the course, the name of the university, or any other relevant factors—almost as if the move is more important than the individual and all of their previous accomplishments!
The emphasis remains on how the child will leave India and go to the United States, thus permanently associating the golden glory of the United States with the child’s future, leaving behind India’s “inferior” educational scope. Literary phrases like “American dream” are frequently served alongside the hors d’oeuvres of drawing room discussions. Who doesn’t want to make it big in an international superpower like the United States, where things are supposed to be better than anywhere else? Wrong.
In fact, giving in to the desire to travel abroad solely for the sake of conformity or social validation may even slow a student’s career and lead to a crippling need to re-evaluate personal desires in light of societal conventions.
A student’s career trajectory in the United States may not change much if there is no productive reason for it, whereas another student in India may achieve a lot more in a similar amount of time because they invested their financial, emotional, and intellectual resources in the right places. Finally, we must ignore the FOMO associated with what our neighbor’s or relative’s daughter is doing during her universal study abroad and focus on finding our children the right-sized shoes that fit.
After all, there’s no better way to waltz through a crowded ballroom than in comfy pumps. Education abroad stilettos are overrated in many ways!Book your Free Counselling Session now!