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Study abroad - The Key to success

Écrit par Dr. Damaris Foping





- This is the vision you must have:


You see, we succeed in life because we become the best at something. You succeed because you become so good in a field that employers from around the globe would do anything to have/keep you. Do you know for example that there are plenty of foreigners (scientists, engineers ......) who entered the United States under a temporary visa and, without ever attempting anything illegal, have never left? They now live permanently in the USA – what happened? Simple: the employer (or the nation itself) has refused to see them go.


Africans need to hear this. I have travelled the world and have friends and acquaintnces that span nearly all continents - trust me when I tell you this, Africans are individuals with exceptional predisposition when it comes to the brightness of minds, many simply land abroad with wrong mindset.

 End of this quick parenthesis.


Becoming the best in one's field is easier abroad because the best opportunities and institutions are abroad. This is what should drive you abroad—nothing else.

Fleeing Africa and the 'poverty' is not a valid reason for going abroad. Those who leave Africa because they want to “flee” never succeed abroad because from the outset, their minds are far from their studies/becoming a success and geared towards all the wrong things

To search for ways and means to be (among) the best in your field SHOULD BE the reason that takes you abroad —that and nothing else. Land with these intentions and you are off to a good start.

Although it is a popular belief, foreign nations are not a paradise where money grows on trees.


Upon graduation there are only three possibilities:   

  • You graduate and find a job (permanent or temporary depending on the terms of your visa) - Thereafter, you are fulfilled in your career, so fulfilled that you are free to come and go between Mama Africa and abroad. Better yet, you are becoming a great personality, African or global.
  • You graduate and find a not-very adequate job; as a consequence you live hand to mouth. Because you are not fulfilled, returning to Africa is not an option, and possibly at the end of the period of the validity of your visa, you go underground (become an illegal alien)—which, by the way, is a trap that becomes increasingly tempting.
  • Things go so wrong that you end or never end your studies and you cannot find work. You see yourself forced to engage in bizarre activities, the most bizarre of which include things like the sale of your own blood or organs, prostitution, forgery and fraud - all this just to survive. It is hard to believe but this represents the lives of hundreds of thousands of ex-students abroad. Those who fall under this category can’t exactly go back to Africa because of the 'what will people say' factor – what many prospective students overlook is the fact that for these students the situation is worse than before they left Africa—the psychological repercussions are terrible.

    What to do to finish in category 1?
    (This question has probably crossed your mind.)

    Answer? One word: preparation / planning (that’s all there is to it). Nothing will fall in your lap just because you are abroad. There will be plenty of opportunities on campus and elsewhere in your home town or surrounding towns. But how can you take advantage of them if you cannot recognize them?
    That's why putting a lot of seriousness in preparing for your departure is vital.

Need help to get the most out of your experience abroad? Entrust your case to one of our consultants.

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