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RJ Salil and RJ Archana Talk to ReachIvy on How to Plan Your Child’s Study Abroad

Posted on Sep 18, 2019
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August is the busy month for foreign college applications. Foreign universities have two main admission terms: The Fall and the Spring. If your child is applying for higher studies in the fall term (that runs from mid-August to mid-December), you will need to begin the college application process a year in advance.

Radio City 91.1 FM invited Vibha Kagzi, founder and CEO of ReachIvy, to their studio for a talk show on how parents can help their children make the right choices. As a parent, you want to ensure that your child gets the best education, while maintaining the delicate balance of managing finances. Also, there is an information overload in the internet that often leaves students and parents confused. Vibha Kagzi attempts to dispel doubts, and shows the way forward. Here is the excerpt of the radio talk:

RJ Salil and RJ Archana presents the show titled, “Kasa Kai, Mumbai!”:

RJ Salil: What’s the right time for a child to prepare for higher studies abroad?

Vibha: Actually, when it comes to studies, Indian parents are a paranoid lot. We easily get worked up while planning for our children’s education. There is so much information out there, that it is easy to get carried away. At ReachIvy, we advise parents not to get worked up about their child’s education. The ideal time to start preparing your child for higher education is 8th grade, if your child plans to study abroad for undergraduate studies. To be on the safe side, start planning about 4 years from the time you wish to apply. For instance, if your child wants to study abroad after graduation, you can start planning when your child is in 12th grade. By this time, your child has formed the ability to think independently, understand the challenges that go with foreign studies, and is capable of taking on responsibilities.

RJ Salil: Does education in a boarding school system prepare kids for living alone abroad?

Vibha: Boarding schools are great. They help kids develop individuality and an ability to live responsibly. Personally, I am not a big fan of boarding schools. I prefer that students get the grounding at home, while living with siblings, parents, grandparents, and relatives. Our Indian family system inculcates strong family values, and builds lifelong bonds. It also helps students find their bearings when they feel marooned in an unknown country.

Every student is different. Some students learn to live independently when they are 14; others may not develop that degree of independence even after 18.

RJ Salil and RJ Archana invited a parent to share her views and queries on Radio City. Vibha Kagzi gets to the nitty gritty of the study abroad process:

Parent: My daughter is in grade 10. She is 15, and currently studying in an IB program. My query is that even if my daughter has selected a college based on her liking, should she still consider other options? How should she boost her options?

Vibha: Actually, today we have a plethora of options when it comes to overseas education. While your child may have fallen in love with an international course or college, it is necessary to evaluate your choice based on scientific measures. You must consider psychometric testing tools to help you understand whether your profile is the best match for your choice of college, and to understand whether it aligns with your future plans. To boost your chances in some of the top ranking schools, it is a good idea to take up internship with a company. Your child can shadow someone at the workplace, whether it is your friend, family or a close relative. Your child can pick up important lessons about working in a professional setup, and hone her work skills. These skills will boost her chances in a good college abroad.

If possible, send your child for a short term course abroad. Think of it as a test-drive for the full time long term course. If your child enjoys the short term course, she can ease into the education system without having to adjust to the new setting. Also, a short term course gives both the parent and a child, a mock run to help prepare for the real study abroad experience.

Vibha: As a parting note, I urge parents not to superimpose their dreams, desires, and aspirations on their children. This can be detrimental for all. Allow your child room to recognize their capabilities and chalk out their own path. Be a partner in their success, and help them achieve their own dreams.

ReachIvy  sincerely hopes that this article serves as a critical tool to increase your knowledge base. For study abroad consultation or career counselling  with ReachIvy, Submit a Query now! Also, review our resources to access our free premium content.