By Ben Shanesky
Business Technology Analyst | Consulting
I never would have thought that travelling abroad for school would help me in the office, but it did in more ways than I possibly could have imagined.
I spent nearly six months in Europe while completing the final semester of my Bachelor of Business Administration degree. I studied in Vienna and attended the Vienna University of Economics and Business. While the school itself was fantastic, my greatest learning experiences didn’t actually come from the classroom.
Meeting global students
Global diversity amongst students on an exchange program is quite comparable to that of Deloitte. We represent our local firm (school) and we each have our own different thing going on. Meeting fellow students from around the world was an unbelievable experience and proved to be a great way to learn how to get to connect with people on so many different levels and in many different ways.
Last minute travel
As an exchange student, it’s your duty to do regional travel, and in Europe, it’s a breeze. Cheap flights to and from almost anywhere makes for the best spontaneous travel plans. The catch? Baggage, of course. As cliché as it may sound, experience with last minute packing with size limitations in Europe was great prep for keeping business travel light with a small carry-on and packing within minutes, for flights we booked the very same day.
Balancing it all
New people, new school, new countries, new everything. Taking it all in can be overwhelming, and the same goes for the work we do. Last minute changes and a wide array of activities going on, and opportunities in which we can get involved, along with our own personal lives – it’s all a part of our day-to-day life. Balancing it all personally and in school, while also living abroad for months truly helped improve my ability to keep up with work life and personal areas on a daily basis.
Don’t think twice about taking a semester abroad if your program offers it. It will be the greatest time of your academic career – and believe it or not, a considerably great prep for your professional career.
Ben is a recent graduate from the Schulich School of Business at York University. He is currently a Business Technology Analyst in our Consulting practice.