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share by Nadine Mohamed
9 Ways to Create a Sustainable Study Abroad Experience
Educating yourself on the culture and sustainability practices of the country you're studying abroad will help you create a sustainable study abroad experience.

This world needs sustainability, as every small step can lead to a better tomorrow. From reducing plastic waste to implementing eco-friendly practices, the importance of sustainability cannot be overstated. In a world where we are constantly reminded of our impact on the environment, it is high time we start taking responsibility for our actions and making a conscious effort to preserve our planet.


This is extra important when you're in a whole other country as a foreigner. Educating yourself on the culture and sustainability practices of the country you're studying abroad is important. But that's not all there is, so in this article, we'll walk you through how you can make smart and healthy decisions to make your study abroad experience sustainable. So buckle up and get ready to embark on a journey towards a greener future!


Here are some tips on how to create a sustainable study abroad experience:

1. Choose a sustainable study abroad program

The first step in making your study abroad experience sustainable is to choose a program that values sustainability. Look for programs that have a sustainability mission statement, incorporate sustainability into their curriculum, and provide opportunities to engage with local communities and conservation efforts. If you would be interested in studying sustainability, you can check out these sustainability programs all around the globe.


2. Reduce your carbon footprint

Air travel is one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions, so try to reduce your carbon footprint by choosing eco-friendly transportation options. Instead of flying, consider taking a train or bus to your destination. Once you arrive, use public transportation or ride a bike to get around. Walking is also a great option, as it allows you to explore your surroundings and get some exercise.


3. Conserve resources

Water and energy are precious resources, especially in some parts of the world. To conserve these resources, take short showers, turn off lights when you leave a room, and unplug electronics when they’re not in use. Also, consider using a refillable water bottle instead of buying bottled water. This will not only save you money but also reduce plastic waste.


4. Support local businesses

When you shop at local markets and eat at locally-owned restaurants, you support the local economy and reduce the environmental impact of transporting goods long distances. Additionally, buying souvenirs made by local artisans supports traditional crafts and helps preserve cultural heritage.


5. Volunteer with local organizations

Volunteering with local organizations is a great way to give back to the community and learn more about local environmental and social issues. Look for opportunities to volunteer with conservation groups, animal shelters, or social justice organizations. You can also participate in community service projects organized by your study abroad program.


6. Learn about local environmental issues

Every region faces unique environmental challenges, from deforestation to water scarcity. By learning about these issues, you can better understand the local culture and contribute to sustainable solutions. Attend lectures, visit local museums and cultural centers, and talk to people in the community to learn more about the environmental and social issues that affect the region.


7. Travel responsibly

Traveling is essential to studying abroad, but it’s important to do so responsibly. Before you travel, research sustainable tourism practices and try to choose eco-friendly activities. For example, consider hiking, cycling, or taking public transportation instead of taking a cruise or driving a rental car. Also, respect local customs and traditions and avoid activities harming animals or the environment.


8. Reduce waste

When you’re living in a foreign country, it’s easy to generate a lot of waste. To reduce your impact, try to minimize your use of disposable products like paper towels, plastic bags, and single-use utensils. Instead, use cloth towels, reusable bags, and a set of reusable utensils. Also, consider composting food waste and recycling as much as possible.


9. Be mindful of your energy use

When you’re living in a foreign country, it’s important to be mindful of your energy use. Turn off lights and electronics when you’re not using them, and avoid leaving the air conditioning or heating on when you leave your room. Additionally, try to use natural light as much as possible and limit your use of hot water.


Being sustainable is easy, and the benefits far outweigh the work done. So, let's do our part to reduce our environmental impact and make the world a better place, one eco-friendly choice at a time.


Being sustainable while studying abroad doesn't happen without actually studying abroad. So when you're looking for a study abroad program, the sustainable decision would be to apply through Educatly because you do so little, and the rewards exceed your expectations. For example, you can fill out a form, and an educational consultant will contact you and help you choose your study abroad destination, university, major, and program.


You can also easily sign up to Educatly and update your profile to get matched with a suitable program with your interests or browse through 25,000+ programs worldwide.


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