How to Get Your Parents to Let You Do A Semester or More Overseas

By | December 31, 2014

Safety is Priority:
Generally the number one concern for mom and dad is the safety of their child. With the media reporting 24/7 on tragedies occurring overseas, their fears grow even more. It is a very challenging and uneasy dilemma to allow your daughter or son to be in a different country all on their own. Make sure they know the numbers to the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

Being street smart can get you in and out of places in one piece while someone who isn’t may encounter troubles in their own home country. The basics for foreigners coming to the U.S. is to call 911. In popular tourist countries like Europe, it is 112 and 000 in Australia.

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Health Care:
Make sure that in your study abroad destination you are covered (or can get coverage) for common injuries an active young adult will experience like a sprained ankle, broken leg, dislocated shoulder, animal bites, commuter bus collisions, (okay, just kidding about the last 2 or 3), you know what I mean.  The moment they understand you are covered in case of an accident they will feel a lot better.

Concerns about Money:
Is your plan to study in Spain (or wherever) on your parents dime as a loan,  savings from your part-time job, or from a study abroad scholarship?   You will certainly need to have the funds issue all sorted out.

If money is low in your account,  sites like fundly.com,  gofundme.com, gogetfunding.com  could be the source that funds your trip and education.

Present a detailed budget to your parents showing the living accommodations, the cost of living, and they will conclude you are on the ball and understand the value of money.

Staying connected:
At the end of the day, no parent likes to see their big baby leaving the nest. The emotional aspect of studying abroad was amplified in my case because I am an only child and spent all four years of my undergraduate studies living at home.

Now that my Mom has a smartphone, she instant messages me whenever she wants. We can Skype while she is at work or at home and she even sends me an occasional picture of her daily adventures. When I asked if technology made her feel better about me studying abroad, she said, “The physical distances are there, but technology forbids the ‘out of sight, of my mind’ scenario.”

So, once these necessities are taken care of, you’ll want to get them into a stranglehold and pummel them with the benefits of studying in another country. They will surely tap out and say okay you win with all those points described below.

1.)  Going overseas to study looks awesome on your resume.
Individuals who go abroad are considered self-motivated, as well as being culturally informed from firsthand experiences.  With all the competition in the modern day job market, an international education will help your resume stick out and pique the interest of employers.

2.)  It’s an experience that will not be forgotten and will surely alter your outlook.
The phrase most often used by students is it was something that changed their lives in a positive way. Typically,  new international friendships are made that continue once you come back home.

3.) Let Them Know Your Main Reasons for Studying Overseas.
Some really good objectives, which should be genuine, are for you to become more proficient in a language, courses offered abroad that are ideal because it will help your career post-graduation, or just simply cultural immersion.  Remember, you are not going for primarily fun and adventure, it should be to better yourself as a person and help your career. This makes for a great argument.

Conservative parents are going to be naturally reluctant at first so convincing them with the above advantages and maybe some testimonials from alumni can help overcome the roadblock.  Be sure you get all the information you can about your desired country and then show your parents that you are absolutely committed and responsible, they should side with you.