The reputation of American higher education precedes itself, and it consistently ranks in the top 10 across the globe, with approximately 50% of the leading universities in the world located in the USA.
Over the past decades, the United States has been one of the most popular university destinations for international students from all over the world. From selling the glamorous campus life in American universities to portraying the possibilities of living the American Dream by getting a good job afterward, Hollywood has played a major role in promoting American education. Therefore, most of us are quite familiar with the ins and outs of American education even though we have never set foot on a real American college campus. However, don't be fooled by these sometimes crazy and fictional film portraits, as the United States is home to 7 of the top 10 universities in the world! Hence its great relevance in international education. Nonetheless, let's look beyond the glamorous version of American higher education and run through the top 5 reasons to study in the USA!
The reputation of American higher education precedes itself, and it consistently ranks in the top 10 across the globe, with approximately 50% of the leading universities in the world located in the USA. Many of the schools have a prestigious history and established campus culture, so joining a university is more like joining a large family. The schools are known for their high academic standards and are recognized worldwide for this!
Universities in the USA are also famous for their research, technology, and innovation, and provide the tools and equipment to their students to develop in these fields. Many participate in groundbreaking research, led by some of the brightest minds. Schools also offer the possibility for you to become a teaching or research assistant, which allows you to learn from the very best, and share your knowledge with your peers. The professors and teachers have a close relationship with the students, therefore you are bound to receive the guidance and personal attention you need to succeed in your studies.
The American education system is famous for a reason, it provides you with flexibility. Instead of having to decide your major as soon as you apply, it is tradition to take more general, core classes for the first years of your studies, also known as “liberal arts”. Therefore, you can try out different subjects and find your true calling during your studies.
The teaching methods in the USA are incredibly diverse, with a range of classroom studies, practical studies, and even remote learning. This provides you with the option to focus on learning in the best way for you. The USA is known for its focus on innovation and technology, and many universities adopt the latest technologies in their education, so you will be at the forefront of all of this too.
You may be wary of the notoriously high fees associated with studying in the USA. But not all universities are as expensive as you may think. Private universities are known to have the highest fees, while state-run or public universities generally have lower fees.
Usually, accommodation and health insurance, among other perks are included in the fee structure. Many universities offer a range of scholarships and financial aid to assist you, so it is a good idea to research your desired university and explore the options available to you. Many banks also offer loans, stipends, and financial assistance once you provide them with proof of admission.
Studies in the USA revolve not only on the academic side but also on a range of options for you to pursue in your free time. Most universities have a wide variety of societies, associations, greek life, clubs and sports you can join free of charge. Whether you enjoy the arts, drama, music, sports, journalism, photography, or politics, there is something for everyone. In the first weeks of studies, it is common for students to explore the options on offer and decide on what they would like to pursue further.
College-level sports are known to have an incredibly competitive level, with competitions taking place nationwide. Even many well-known athletes in the USA have a background in college sports! If playing sports is not for you, maybe spectating is. College sporting events usually gather masses of supporters from the city in question. They are a great way to participate in American culture, cheerleaders, chants and hot dogs included!
Upon graduation, an international degree opens up a world of career possibilities, as degrees from the USA are internationally recognized and respected. The wide range of subjects and courses on offer opens up the possibility of pursuing diverse career paths. Many companies, not only in the USA, value international experience and education as it provides a great basis for working and interacting with different people. Modern companies value multi-culturalism, communication skills, open-mindedness, and independence, which are all sought-after in the workforce, all of which you have the chance to develop through your studies.
Most universities offer the chance to complete practical training or internships during your studies, allowing you to develop your skills in a real working environment. This can help to provide you with valuable experience to kickstart your career post-graduation and provide you with a competitive edge.
Once you have graduated, the USA offers you the opportunity to work in your chosen field for a year. This is known as the Optional Practical Training, or OPT.
The United States of America is one of the most diverse countries with an incredibly multicultural population, so you are sure to meet new people from around the world through your studies. Most students live on campus for the first years of their studies, so you have the chance to learn about different cultures and even share your own in a community-like environment. Universities in the USA attract students from around the world, from various nationalities, ethnicities, and religions, which is what makes student life so diverse and enlightening.
Even nature is diverse, so whether you enjoy surfing, skiing, hiking, or prefer city life, you are sure to find the perfect environment for you. Make sure to explore your environment and enjoy all it has to offer!
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Author: Pinja Viljaharju