Exchange Programs: A Second Door to the World
- * Badi Lattif (third from the left) is a third year APM (College of International Management) student from Brunei. This post introduces his experience studying abroad in Canada during his second year.
We are only given four years to take advantage of the opportunities presented to us as a college student. As I intended to make the most of my four years, going on an exchange program was a top priority for me. APU offers its students the wonderful opportunity to undergo a hybrid learning experience of studying in Japan and in another country through its network of exchange partnerships. It was perfect that I only had to pay my APU tuition (minus my tuition reduction scholarship) during my entire time abroad.
Being born in Europe and having lived for a while in Asia, I wanted to spend a year in a completely different environment. North America became the immediate destination in my mind for an exchange program. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the Schulich School of Business, one of Canada’s top-tier business schools, was one of APU’s exchange partners. The fact that this would also allow me to live in the vibrant city of Toronto further compelled me to make Schulich my first choice.
I attended guidance sessions by the Academic Office and began applying in my second semester. After a handful of essays and interviews, I was delightfully informed of my acceptance into the program. Trip preparation included potential accommodation choices, applying for a student visa and most importantly research on travel itineraries during my time there.
My year abroad is the best choice I have made as an APU student so far. A year of studying under Schulich’s intense curriculum undoubtedly equipped me with a solid understanding of the business world, which I am able to apply to my studies back at APU. My favorite classes were Social Media for Marketing and Management, New Venture Creation and Managing the Family Enterprise. Final assignments for classes were actual projects with real clients provided by professors, which meant we were able to present our proposals in front of company executives and get a hands-on experience of business etiquette.
I think we are all familiar with the cliché that going on a year abroad is the best year of your life. I promise you that it is 100% true. Being thrown into a completely new environment calls for a further sense of independency and maturity. I made new friends and was able to travel to places I only dreamed of ever visiting—New York City, Montreal and Barbados to name a few! I developed a more global outlook which has inspired me to keep traveling and exploring the world.
If you are hoping to push your boundaries and get out of your comfort zone, I simply cannot recommend the idea of an exchange program enough. Enrich your learning, expand your network of friends, and travel with no regrets!