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California Community College Student Outcomes Abroad Research Project


Re–Entry Handbook, University of Minnesota Learning Abroad Center

Use your experiences abroad to increase your employment prospects. Explore how study abroad may have advanced your career goals through Self–Reflection and identifying the Skills & Qualities you acquired, as well as how to convey your experiences in Networking & Interviews. (from the "Re–Entry Handbook, University of Minnesota Learning Abroad Center")


  1. Share an example of how you had to set priorities to achieve a desired outcome in your study abroad experience.
  2. Self-Reflection
  3. How did your study abroad experience enhance your knowledge, skills, and understanding of your intended career field? What assets might international experiences yield as opposed to someone who studied domestically?
  4. Share an example of a travel situation that helped you build your understanding of human motivation. How did this enhance your understanding of leadership or teamwork?
  5. Share an example of how your international experience has improved your skills in communicating with others. How might this make you a better professional in your field?
  6. How did you have to adjust/adapt to your new cultural surroundings? Share examples from academic, social, and work settings. How did this influence your ability to interact successfully with others?
  7. Share an international experience in which you had to resolve a conflict or solve a problem. What skills and personal qualities did you tap into? How did the experience help you grow as a person?
  8. Share an example of a study abroad experience in which you took initiative to achieve a greater result.
  9. Share an example of a time when you may have been in danger or afraid. What did you learn from it? Why?
  10. What was the most significant thing you learned about yourself through your study abroad experience? Why?

Skills & Qualities

What skills or proficiences have you acquired or enhanced while you were abroad? Skills that professionals with international experiences cite as being particularly useful in their careers include:

Skill and Qualities
  • Enhanced cultural awareness and sensitivity to customs and cultural differences
  • Foreign language proficiency
  • Adaptability
  • Ability to identify and achieve goals
  • General improvement in communications skills
  • Increased confidence, initiative, and independence
  • Greater flexibility, sense of humor
  • Awareness of global economic and political issues and realities
  • Ability to maintain an open mind and be tolerant of others
  • Clarification of goals and improved self-awareness
  • General travel skills
  • Resource management
  • Organization
  • Problem solving
  • Crisis management
  • Patience
  • Listening and observation
  • Specific professional skills or knowledge base

Networking & Interviews

Networking and Interviews
  • Develop stories and responses in advance. Be ready to show it was a learning experience and provide examples.
  • Utilize the reflection questions to formulate your responses and stories.
  • Review the list of skills and develop examples of how you gained these abroad.
  • Identify skills in the job description and create examples from your international experience that exemplify those skills.