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Saturday, August 25, 2018

4 Misconceptions about Exchange



Wazzup Pilipinas!
Exchange is an exhilarating once-in-a-lifetime experience. From the diverse people you will meet to the exciting activities you will take part in, the opportunity will expand your horizons, change the way you view the world, and help you realize your true potential. In just a few month’s time, exchange will shape you to be the best version of yourself.

But with every big decision that we have to make comes our common fears and inhibitions. What if it is difficult to go on exchange? What if I will feel alone when I get to the host country of my choice? What if I do not get the experience I envisioned myself to be in?

Let AIESEC shatter your fear of the unknown, as we debunk 4 misconceptions about exchange:

1. It is difficult to go on Exchange

Many exchange hopefuls are held back by the logistical difficulties they think they might encounter. After all, booking your flights, arranging your accommodations, and processing your visa is no walk in the park. On top of that, you have to coordinate with your host in the country of your choice, set expectations for the trip, and create an itinerary for yourself. Sounds pretty daunting, right?

But never fear, AIESEC is here! An Exchange Manager from AIESEC in the Philippines will be assigned to guide you through your exchange journey— from beginning to end. Once you have successfully chosen an exchange country of your choice, your Exchange Manager will talk to you about the iconic exchange experience, provide you with an exchange brief to walk you through the planning stage, and consult with you about your expectations, fears, and everything in between. Even when you touchdown in your host country, your Exchange Manager will never leave your side. He will constantly ask for updates, check on you, and give you insights to help you make the most out of the experience. When you arrive back in the Philippines, your Exchange Manager will still be there to debrief you about exchange, ask questions about your trip, and synthesize all that you learned. Needless to say, you can be assured that AIESEC in the Philippines will hold your hand as you embark on exchange!

2. It is expensive to join the Exchange program

Some people say that exchange will empty your wallet. Covering your expenses abroad can be costly, especially when you have flights, lodging, meals, and other things to spend on. Because of this, people think that they must have a large sum of cash before they can even consider to go on exchange.

But this isn’t always the case! AIESEC does the best they can to make exchange affordable for everyone, because we believe that exchange is the greatest gift we can give the youth. Some exchange opportunities cover anything that you will need— from your accommodations, to meals, and everything in between. Other programs even offer monetary compensation for some students who choose to participate in their exchange opportunity. Now, everyone can go on exchange and enjoy the opportunities it has in store!

3. Only the top students can go on Exchange

A few aspiring exchange applicants believe that the top students are the top picks for exchange. People believe that the exchange application process is similar to the ones offered by their universities— applicants are ranked based on their academic standing, extra- curricular activities, and other endeavors, assessed on their backgrounds and abilities, then offered an exchange opportunity. Supposedly, only the best students are given an immediate exchange invite, while the lower ranked students do not make the cut at all.

However this is far from the truth, unlike other exchange programs, AIESEC opens exchange to all! We believe that everyone has the potential to be a leader, so we allow everyone to go on exchange to explore their capabilities. We do not process applications based on your grades, org activities, amongst others. Rather, we conduct interviews to get to know you better— what topics interests you, what experience you are looking forward to, what kind of worker you are. From your answers, we will match you provide you with a shortlist of exchange opportunities that we think you will enjoy.  With this application process in place, AIESEC ensures that all exchange participants get the experience they deserve and maximize their fullest potential!

4. If I go on Exchange, I will get delayed

Most college students think that going on exchange means flying out during the semester, missing out on classes, and ultimately getting delayed. Since graduating on time is of utmost importance for most students, they completely forego their dream of participating in exchange. They lose sight of the life-changing opportunities that exchange can give them, simply because they are trying to chase the graduation clock.

But time is never a problem with AIESEC exchange! You can go on exchange at any time, during any season, on any given date. All you have to do is choose an opportunity that fits perfectly into your schedule, apply for the program, and viola— you get to go on an exchange! Now, you can get the best of both worlds— you can graduate on time with all your block mates and friends, while enjoying the sights, wonders, people, and places when you are on exchange. Isn’t that great?

Now that we have shattered these misconceptions on exchange, you have no more excuses to wait! Your exchange journey starts with your decision to make a difference, break free from your comfort zone, and explore the world around you. Finally, you can Create Tomorrow, Today with AIESEC exchange!

To know more about AIESEC, visit our website at www.aiesec.org. Follow us also on
www.facebook.com/AIESECPH for more updates!

Written By: Colleen Anne Chua

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