Living and studying abroad is often one of the most exciting experiences in a young person’s life. It’s a time of tremendous academic and personal growth unlike any other. And it’s often a time when young people develop new self-confidence and maturity as they successfully met the challenges of living in a different country.
It’s important that parents give their student the space they need to grow while studying overseas. While email and inexpensive international telephone calls make it easy for families to stay in touch, they also encourage a level of contact that makes it difficult for students to focus on their new surroundings. One of the most valuable gifts you can give your student is to help him or her grow in independence and responsibility. Therefore, we encourage you to influence your student to explore their surroundings, speak the local languages, sample new cuisines and cultural experiences and to take full advantage of this time in their life.
It is natural for you to worry a bit about how your student will cope in unfamiliar surroundings. Your concerns may stem from unanswered questions: What are the living conditions like? How much money does my student need while studying abroad? May I visit? What happens if a student experiences physical or emotional problem while living overseas? To whom at Suffolk may I go to get help if I have reason to be concerned about my student's well being?
These pages are an essential tool in helping you prepare to send your student overseas to live and study in a new, unfamiliar environment. They are designed to answer questions you may have about travel, housing, health and safety, academics and adjustments students often face while living in a different culture. No doubt you want to do all you can to assist your student to get ready for this experience. This guide will answer your specific questions and offer ideas on where to get further information.
We hope you will enjoy this time of preparation together – for it’s the beginning of a most rewarding adventure for all of you.