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Why Medical Students Should Study Abroad
Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara discusses the option of studying abroad and why this is something that medical students should consider.
By: UAG
15/May/2023
UAG
If you are attending medical school, have you considered spending some time studying abroad? Most medical schools offer the option of arranging a clinical elective overseas, and this is a very beneficial thing to do. Why do schools encourage students to participate in study abroad programs? Increasingly, global health training is becoming more important. Studying abroad can build on your existing skill set and make you a more attractive candidate when it comes time to start your career. Let’s take a look at the many different benefits for medical students studying abroad.

•    International study gives you an educational edge. In another part of the world, you are likely to experience teaching styles you have not encountered during your time at school in the United States. You may be in a position to participate in research or volunteer opportunities, or to do some shadowing that will give you insight into how healthcare processes work in a medical system that’s very different from the one you’ve experienced at home in the United States. You can get hands-on training in new environments, with different equipment, and even illnesses you may not encounter in the US. This kind of hands-on learning, outside of your comfort zone, can help you grow as a doctor. You’ll face challenges that sharpen your skills and make you more of a problem solver. If you’re looking to apply to grad school, time spent abroad can boost your appeal for as an applicant. 

•    You can gain ground professionally by studying abroad. Time spent studying abroad shows potential employers that you are someone who enjoys challenges and will push themselves to learn new things. Because it’s challenging on so many different levels, studying overseas can help students grow personally, academically, socially, and culturally, and this makes them more appealing as prospective employees. What’s more, during your time abroad you will interact with professionals from many different cultural backgrounds while building your professional network. Having professional connections both domestically and abroad can be extremely beneficial to people in the medical field.
 
•    When you study abroad, you grow as a person. A recent study found that 95 percent of students who studied abroad felt that it was a positive experience that improved their world view and helped them mature as people. Further, 98 percent of these students felt that time spent in international study gave them a better understanding of their own cultural backgrounds and biases.  Studying in another country helps you become more adaptable, and this is an important skill to have in a world that’s growing ever more multicultural. The experience will make you a more confident professional, and you will develop personal relationships that you may carry with you for years to come.

•    The opportunity for cultural immersion can make studying abroad an amazing experience. What will you gain from living in an unfamiliar country? One obvious benefit is the chance to learn a foreign language or improve on your existing foreign language skills. Being bilingual or multilingual is a highly marketable skill, and studying abroad is very useful for language acquisition. Even a short, six to 12 month stay in another country gives students the opportunity to experience a new cultural climate. This helps build cultural competence, allowing them to relate to people of different backgrounds and helping them to become medical professionals who are well suited to connect with colleagues, clients, and patients on a deeper level. It is a mind opening experience that helps students develop critical thinking skills, along with an appreciation for other worldviews and philosophies. Carrying that experience with them makes them more compassionate, globally minded individuals.

If you are interested in studying abroad, and looking for a medical school with a deep-rooted tradition of quality, look into Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara. The first medical school in Latin America to offer a US-style curriculum, we are committed to cultivating future physicians who have the skills and abilities necessary to meet the challenges of personal and community health. With the best facilities in Guadalajara, state-of-the-art laboratories, and a close working relationship with many of the hospitals in the city, we are able to provide an excellent educational experience for our students both on campus and in the field. With the goal of preparing graduates for careers as physicians where they can provide individuals, families, and communities with outstanding preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic services, our medical school offers a curriculum of excellence. We prepare our students to heal and serve their community, and we encourage them to strive for innovation, academic excellence, leadership, and commitment to society. For more information about our college of medicine, call 833-220-7645 or contact us through our website.

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