Students should look at their higher education experience as much more than simply an endeavor to acquire advanced knowledge and skills.Pursuing a graduate degree, especially in a field such as engineering, should be approached as a life-changing opportunity to transform yourself so that you are prepared to one day transform the world
Studying abroad is one of the best ways to begin that kind of transformation. Many universities in the United States, for instance, offer educational environments that enable students to connect with people from a wide range of cultural and socio-economic backgrounds, whether they be fellow students, professors, mentors or industry leaders.
Such an environment is ripe with possibilities for learning from the work and the accomplishments of others how to adopt a mind-set that opens the way to creativity and innovation.
Studying at colleges and universities in places other than your homeland – especially institutions that attract students from many countries – gives you the chance to build lifelong networks of colleagues and collaborators that extend across nationalities, ethnicities and diverse perspectives and viewpoints.
Great ideas and inspiration can spring from such a connective social fabric, one that promotes the kind of imaginative thinking that leads to new approaches to addressing some of the world’s most significant problems.
Such a dynamic atmosphere provides a solid foundation for developing a global outlook on the meaning and importance of a career in engineering.It is an exciting time to be a globally aware engineer. The planet’s growing population is driving demand for more reliable access to water, food, energy, health care and education. Engineering ingenuity will be critical to meeting those needs. But a multiplicity of ideas is necessary to generate the breadth of problem-solving technologies, systems and methods that will be necessary to produce and deliver sustainable solutions.
It is important for universities to embrace the spirit of inventiveness and social entrepreneurship, encouraging students to broaden their horizons beyond the classroom.
Students need numerous opportunities to engage in research and experiential learning that allow you to cultivate and pursue your interests with a sense of adventure – even if it means taking a unique pathway that diverges from that of your near peers. It’s all about fostering a learning culture that strives to go beyond achieving technical expertise. It seeks to also create opportunities for students to develop the curiosity, resourcefulness and tenacity that enables engineers, entrepreneurs and like-minded pioneers to think big and do big things.