Certificate Programsby Robyn Tellefsen
As an international student, you may be searching for an ideal higher education solution. Though degree programs afford many benefits, don't overlook certificate programs abroad - another excellent way to pursue overseas education.
A Short-Term Commitment
As opposed to degree programs that require two to four years of study, most certificate programs can be completed in a year or less. Since you'll be in school for a shorter period of time, you can save some money and see a quicker return on your education investment.
Though financial aid is available for study abroad certificate programs, you'll bear less of a financial burden since your stay is shorter. You'll also save on living expenses overseas, which may be higher than expenses in your home country, depending on where you choose to study.
And when you gain acceptance into a study abroad certificate program, you may only need a short-term visa. This can simplify the visa application process at the outset and save you from having to continually renew your visa and residence permit in-country. Plus, you won't need to beef up your savings to prove to the foreign government that you'll be able to support yourself financially for several years of study.
An Essential Credential
Though certificate programs typically take less time to complete, they're no less valuable than two- or four-year degree programs. Certificate programs offer specialized training in a particular discipline, and therefore may be used to supplement a related undergraduate or graduate degree. A project manager certificate program, for example, may complement a degree in business, offering targeted training for aspiring managers. Other study abroad certificate programs, such as Web design, may even provide sufficient training for entry into the field.
Of course, study abroad certificate programs are not limited to the business and information technology sectors. International student certificate programs are available in virtually every industry, including health care, education, and a wide variety of specialized trades. Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) remains one of the most popular international student certificate programs around.
Certificate programs overseas also enable you to become immersed in a foreign language, which is valuable for any length of study. And they allow you to get an inside look at a field before you make a greater commitment. Should you fall in love with overseas education, certificate programs abroad provide the perfect segue into long-term degree programs.
You may have the opportunity to complete an international internship in conjunction with your overseas certificate program. This experience opens doors to advancement in your current field or entry into a new field altogether. The expertise you'll gain from a study abroad certificate program will put you ahead of the competition because of the specialized nature of certificate programs as well as the unique experience of earning this credential overseas.
No matter where you choose to study, overseas certificate programs offer an excellent education opportunity that produces personal as well as professional rewards.