Today’s job market is tough. One way to make your resume stand out: get a passport, and study abroad.  According to CNN, only 1% of US students study abroad. Employers are increasingly seeking out candidates with this experience.

That might be why Harvard Business School sent its entire 2012 class overseas.

As reported by CNN, First Lady Michelle Obama recently got in on the act. She encouraged students to study abroad during a recent trip to China:

“The benefits of studying abroad are almost endless,” Obama said during the CNN iReport interview. “First of all, it is going to make you more marketable in the United States. More and more companies are realizing that they need people with experience around the world.”

Does studying abroad really make you more employable? Studies say yes! According to the University of California, Merced, study abroad students were twice as likely to find employment once they graduated. Within one year of graduation, 97% of them had found a job, compared to only 49% of students without international experience.

Study abroad students also had starting salaries that were 25% higher. Ca-ching!

If you’re still not sure what you want to be when you grow up, interning overseas can help.  According to IES Abroad, 70% of students who interned abroad found that the experience helped influence their career paths.

If you plan to study abroad, it goes without saying that you should complete your paperwork as soon possible. This includes your passport application, which takes at least six weeks to process at the post office.  However, you can cut that time down to three weeks if you pay a $60 expedite fee to the Department of State.

If you procrastinated,  there are a couple of options to keep your plane from leaving without you.  Either make an appointment at one of the Department of State’s 28 passport agencies, or use a private passport expediting service. An expediting company will submit your application to the Department of State on your behalf.  This saves you the hassle of making an appointment and waiting in line at a passport agency, plus travel time if there isn’t an agency close by.

Need to get a passport in a hurry? We can help!

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