GenZ, travelers of all time
Updated: Mar 26
Best to take the moment present, as a present for the moment. Indeed, while writing this creative blog facing the Leman Lake in Switzerland, I can hear the noise of the boat on the lake, Mert listening to his endless Romanian songs and Mario talking Italian on the phone. To the genZ way of thinking, studying abroad is the most enriching and valuable moment of a daily lifetime. Generation Z or digital natives, these people born between 1996 and 2010, don’t simply want to travel in foreign countries. They want a veritable cultural experience. As I have been living for 2 years abroad, both in Canada and Switzerland, I couldn't agree more with this statement. Studying and living in another country allowed me to experience life lessons through the eyes of a local and meet thousands of people from every part of the world.
One of the main reasons why generationZ study abroad is because they want to take on the unknown. To my way of thinking, change means a range of new experiences and opportunities. Getting on a plane to unfamiliar places, gives you the opportunity to become whoever you want to become or, in other words, to reinvent yourself. Gaining a global mindset, experiencing personal growth and developing a cultural awareness are essential nowadays for the generation Z to differentiate themselves in the market. However, long distance friendship and spending time away from our relatives are, unfortunately, parts of the game.
As I said above, by studying abroad, genZ increases their cultural awareness. By not only studying but living together on campus, we have the chance to learn new words in another language or even learn about the news internationally. How do you think I learned about the Covid-19? Thanks to my Chinese roommate! As it was not very known in Europe yet, I got to know every step that was taken in China during this horrible crisis. Isn't it so powerful to learn information from all over the world only by discussing it all together at dinner?
By always remaining with the same group of friends from our home countries and by exchanging the same ideas and culture, we do not have the chance to meet other inspiring people that come from various horizons. Boring, isn’t it?
Therefore, I can proudly announce that genZ breaks stereotypes. By travelling in foreign countries, they strive for equality, less discrimination and fairness among each other. I have the chance to study in an international environment which gives me the opportunity to put everyone on the same level, namely by considering everyone equally. How people dress, what language they speak or where they are from do tell something about them, but it does not define them.
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.
Something that surprised me a lot here, is that the generation Z are innovators, they release creativity and changes. Creativity is about generating multiple ideas and combining them in order to get the best result. By having tons of projects together, I got to see how creative some of us are and how much we aspire for innovation. The fact that we all come from foreign countries, travelling to Switzerland allowed us to unite our ideas and thanks to our diversity, to obtain innovative and great ideas. As Mr Kiros Zhang said in his blog post: "Gen Z will promote rapid development with their creative ideas ‘’ and I totally agree with his statement. We see everything under another angle and we want to change the world by implementing and changing existing things.
Now, it is almost time to end this blog post. These 2 life changing experiences have changed me for the better. Studying in an international environment has many more things to offer than most people think. It will offer me a bright future with great opportunities. I’ am sure that every person part of GenZ understood it. Studying away from our home countries is a privilege, one that my parents have granted for me and I will always be utmost grateful for them. My heart is now in 3 different places: Belgium, Canada and Switzerland. I'm wondering where it will be next and where it will remain.
If you liked this article or disagreed with it, please leave a comment or don’t hesitate to let me know by asking for my email address! It would be very helpful for me.
See you around,
Author: Ms Amandine Labar, Business Hospitality Bachelor at Hotel Institute Montreux, from Belgium.