Moving abroad to pursue higher education remains a new and at times, intimidating experience for nearly every student. Especially since each country presents its own set of norms, culture, and traditions.
Though each student hopes for a stress-free experience, culture shock is one of the most significant issues they tend to face. As per a survey conducted by University Living, a student housing platform, 8 out of 10 international students are likely to experience culture shock in some form or another when they make the move abroad.
Coping through Community
The apprehension around being able to fit in and adapt overwhelms many students, especially when they’re on their own. Many students attempt to join student community groups or connect with alumni. It is speculated that this could be stemming from the anxiety of moving to a new country.
Interestingly, the report revealed that roughly 60% of parents become more anxious about their children experiencing culture shock. They are concerned about how their children will cope and fit in. Parents also express concern about reverse culture shock, i.e., readjusting to their home culture after returning to their home cities, to a certain extent.
Post-Pandemic Well Being
The report also touches upon students’ mental well-being in the post-pandemic world. With nearly 5 in 10 students experiencing mental health issues when moving to a new country, universities are seen helping them cope and recover by being more culture-sensitive while dealing with international students.