Does a new passport provide more of a career advantage for recent graduates than an MBA from a top school? Perhaps, according to a New York Times interview with Quintin E. Primo III, the CEO of Capri Capital Partners.

The interview covered a wide range of topics, but several of the questions dealt with the subject of what high school graduates would need to do to get a job at Capri. The first criteria Mr. Primo mentioned was knowing someone internal-no surprise there. What was somewhat surprising was when he advised that for young graduates, getting a new passport and traveling is more important than your choice of college, or even how much you study and how well you do in school:

“So you’ve got to get out of your front door, get out of the comfort and quiet of your home, and your safety zone, and step into a pool of risk where you have no idea what the outcome is going to be. Out of it all, you will have a much broader understanding of the world’s cultures, and you will have a much clearer idea of how the world perceives our culture, and all the value, and the benefits, and the beauty of our culture.

There is nothing more important. I don’t care where you went to business school. I don’t care whether your grades were good or bad. You have to leave the country.”

Whether you’re in high school, in college or even mid-career, international travel is an experience that can help give you in an edge in many different fields. First, however, you need to get a passport.  For more details on what’s required, see How to Apply for a New Passport.

Remember to apply well in advance of your trip. It can take 6 weeks or more to get your new passport back in the mail if you apply with regular processing. Applying for the government’s expedited processing can cut the processing time down to about 3 weeks, for an additional cost of $60.

If you need your passport sooner or you have an unexpected opportunity to travel overseas, the easiest and most convenient option is to use a private passport expediting company like RushMyPassport. Without an expediting company, you’re stuck making an appointment at a passport agency office, which can be a time-consuming process. An expediting company will take your application directly to the Department of State for processing times as low as 24 hours and no need for an appointment.

Apply for your new passport today!