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Welcome Back

Welcome back to Stanford!

Coming home after your time abroad can be both rewarding and challenging. You probably have quite a bit of energy and excitement about the past few months and are ready to make something more of your amazing encounter with the world. You may also be feeling a bit of reverse culture shock as you try to negotiate the ups and downs of life back in the US.

This page contains tips (how to get back out into the world, keeping an international influence in your life), resources (research, careers, etc.), and other information in an effort to ease your transition back to campus.  There are great resources to get you started on making the most of your abroad experience now that you have returned to Stanford.

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Re-entry Adjustments

What Are Your Thoughts?

Think about these questions as you prepare mentally for or upon your return.

  1. What is the most important value you learned overseas?
  2. What did it mean to you to be overseas? How were you received?
  3. Have you gained any new values from being in another country?
  4. How have you (or will you) incorporate these new values?
  5. Do you feel that you have changed at all?
  6. Do you think that people will notice that you have changed?
  7. What do you look forward to upon your return?
  8. What will you miss most about your host country?
  9. What is one thing you wish you could have done while being abroad? What is one thing that you are particularly proud of having done?
  10. Do you have any future plans to return to your host country?
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How To Transition:

These are just a few tips to make your transition back to the US and to Stanford go more smoothly.

  1. Get plenty of sleep.
  2. Stay in touch with people from your overseas program (i.e., use BOSP chat lists).
  3. Organize gatherings with the people from your overseas program in order to reminisce.
  4. Check out foreign films from your host country.
  5. Join an international student group on campus.
  6. Participate in a language table dinner at one of the theme dorms on campus (i.e., Haus Mitt, Maison Française, etc.).
  7. Go to the Bechtel International Center to find out what international students from your host country are up to on campus.
  8. Keep in touch with the Bing Overseas Studies Program; you will begin receiving our Abroad alumni newsletter.
  9. Tutor students in elementary or intermediate language classes on campus.
  10. Make a “public photo album” with a reasonable amount of photos to share with friends and family.
  11. Organize your remaining photos and keep them in a safe place.
  12. Share some overseas stories now with your friends and family and save some for later!
  13. Write your thoughts and feelings in a journal.
  14. Read news online or in the library about your host country to stay connected.
  15. Suspend judgment or self-criticism of how you are feeling about your adjustment to returning.
  16. Use your sense of humor.
  17. Thank your parents and others who made your overseas experience possible.
  18. Send emails and postcards to the new friends you made overseas.

adapted from the Carlton College Reentry package

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Working and Teaching Abroad

Working abroad is a wonderful experience and unique opportunity. Whether or not you intend to pursue a career abroad as a long-term professional goal, employers look highly upon those prospective employees who have gone abroad to study, research or work and who possess the sought-after skills to succeed in an overseas environment.

For many of you, graduation is imminent— but that doesn't mean you have missed the chance to return overseas. The following is a list of links for job and/or volunteer opportunities abroad. As you can see, there are many paths you can take, and we hope you'll pursue whichever appeals to you.

If you have further questions, you can contact the individual programs below or you can stop by the Career Development Center (CDC) to talk to a Career Counselor. PLEASE NOTE: Kristin Conner (kconner@stanford.edu) specializes in international work.

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Teaching K-12 Abroad:

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Working Abroad:

For further information, refer to the Career Development Center’s “International Careers” site.

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Research Opportunities Abroad

Undergraduate Advising & Research (UAR) provides Stanford undergraduates with information, opportunities, and funding to enrich their academic lives through research. Many Overseas Studies participants have taken advantage of UAR offerings in order to pursue research projects abroad, often using their work to support an Honor's Thesis.

  • The UAR website has detailed information on available opportunities including:
  • Grant Opportunities - see:
    • Fellowship and Graduate School Deadlines
    • VPUE Faculty Grants for Undergraduate Research - $6,000 grant
    • Departmental Research Opportunities
    • Plus additional information
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Volunteering Abroad

The Haas Center for Public Service provides Stanford undergraduates with volunteering and service information and opportunities abroad. Many BOSP participants have taken advantage of Haas Center opportunities and grants.

The Haas Center “International Service Opportunities & Resources” website has detailed information on available opportunities.

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Scholarships and Graduate School

Some of you may be planning to go to graduate school, but have you thought about continuing your education overseas? There are many respected graduate programs available abroad. And, if you don't want to leave the US, you can consider the many graduate programs in the US that focus on various international issues. The links below will help point you in the direction of graduate programs in the US and abroad and to the scholarships that can help you continue your international education.

Graduate programs:

Scholarships:

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