“One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way.” – Frank Smith, a contemporary psycholinguist
Language immersion trips present a valuable opportunity to not only become bilingual but also to gain in-depth knowledge of another country and culture. That can enhance your life professionally, personally, and even mentally and spiritually.
After all, 66% of job recruiters actively look for multilingual or bilingual talent. Additionally, when you travel abroad and learn a foreign language, you can form lifelong friendships and relationships.
Now that you know the importance of speaking a second language, let’s talk about language immersion trips worldwide that can help you become bilingual. Here, we’ve put together a detailed list of the best programs for studying languages abroad.
What Do Language Immersion Trips Involve?
Before we dive into the programs, let’s discuss what you’ll do when you travel abroad for a language immersion trip.
Generally speaking, you’ll take classes for several hours each day. Outside of class, you may volunteer, work, intern, or take other classes (depends on the program). For example, certain gap year language immersion programs will include lots of cultural activities so that you can practice the language in a natural setting.
The point is this: During the trip, you’ll be learning every step of the way, whether you’re chatting with locals at the market, studying grammar in class, or visiting a museum.
There are lots of programs out there, from trips for beginners to courses designed for those developing full fluency. From Vietnamese to Swahili to Italian, you can find a program for any target language.
Here’s just a small sample of the variety of programs out there:
- Study Japanese while you intern with The Intern Group in the bustling city of Tokyo, Japan
- Learn Spanish and volunteer with children in Cusco, Peru, a tranquil city in the Andes Mountains (offered by Globalteer)
- Learn Swahili while you volunteer on community support projects in Zanzibar, Tanzania, an archipelago that wows with its natural beauty (through African Impact)
- Join Global Leadership Adventures (GLA) on their Mandarin Service Adventure and learn Chinese as you travel across China (from Beijing to the Tibetan Plateau!)
- Take a French language course in Madagascar and see what life is like on this beautiful island (offered by Projects Abroad)
Finally, realize that many language immersion programs offer academic credit. As you look through programs, check to see if you can gain college credit and inquire with your university if they’ll be able to transfer those credits. If you’re a student, this is an excellent benefit of studying languages abroad. Don’t miss out on it!