International study is a great way to show potential employers that you are willing to work outside of your comfort zone and are able to cooperate with people from diverse backgrounds. But as the number of American students who study abroad increases, you may be looking for a way to stand out from the crowd. If you are thinking about entering one of these fields after graduation, Argentina is the destination for you!
1. HEALTH CARE. Standards are generally high when it comes to health care in the innovative city of Buenos Aires. Outside of the capital, though, availability and quality of medical services can vary. The country is at the center of a task that faces global health in many contexts, in which a sophisticated system is attempting to grapple with developmental needs in a situation where resources are limited. The health care system here demonstrates the tension between political aspiration, democratic provision and huge scale human problems - an eye-opening experience and some important issue to comprehend for students hoping to pursue a career in this sector, especially in an increasingly globalized world. The influx of medical tourism in recent years, a growing emphasis on preventive care and the ever-present threat of global epidemics add some interesting angles too. Fast fact: Did you know that the world's first artificial heart was developed in Argentina in the 1960s?
Photo: A Buenos Aires internship from the CAPA archives
2. INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY. There is need for information technology everywhere, and that need continues to grow. For 2015, the Argentine Chamber of Software and IT Services Companies projected 30 percent growth in this sector and it is expected to steadily increase in 2016. Buenos Aires is an innovation hub with a start-up culture and the highest number of cell phones per capita in the Americas. There are huge opportunities for US companies to export IT skills in the area of agri-tech where technological innovation is necessary to fuel the production of food and drink - a sector that comprises 16% of the country's GDP. Technology is needed to streamline farming processes and improve the dairy industry. Argentina is an early adopter of big data and its fibre-optic broadband network increased by 300% in 2015. This creates a need to supply cell phone carriers with technology that will improve the capacity of the network as well as develop software for data processing. Urban security software is another example of an area where a US company might enter into a collaboration in Buenos Aires. If you're pursuing a career in IT, there's much to be learned in BA.
Photo: Students with their devices at Austral University from the CAPA archives
3. COMMUNICATIONS. While Spanish language majors will certainly benefit from an internship or volunteer experience in Buenos Aires - and even the opportunity to live with a host family - there is value in a semester or summer in Argentina for all communications majors. You'll learn the nuances of intercultural and cross-cultural communication and the importance of relationships to doing business in much of Latin America. The communications industry in BA is important, with Argentines having access to the highest availability of cable and satellite TV in Latin America - similar to the percentage in North America. You'll find that the print media industry is huge and independent of government, publishing more than 200 newspapers, the major ones coming out of BA. The Clarín, for example, is the top selling daily paper in Latin America and has the second widest circulation across the Spanish-speaking world. The book publishing industry is also significant and you'll find El Ateneo - the largest bookstore chain in Latin America - in this city too.
Photo: Media in Buenos Aires from the CAPA archives
4. ENGINEERING. If you have ambition to pursue a career in engineering, studying abroad in Buenos Aires can offer insight into the innovation and problem solving skills required for such a role as the city and surrounding countryside continually develop new infrastructure. Engineers are actually in short supply here in comparison to the amount of work in the pipeline and it's a popular degree choice for local students for that reason. Industrial engineers, in particular - especially in the area of manufacturing - have a lot to learn from this city. Chemical engineers and product engineers can also benefit and civil engineers will be able to observe the progress of large urban planning and construction projects for bridges, roads, airports and sewer systems. Engineering generally is one of the world's quickest growing areas as global demand continues to increase. Many US companies with international branches in Buenos Aires have engineering departments to contribute to some of these projects, so having some knowledge of how the industry functions here can be appealing to a future employer.
Photo: Puerto Madero from the CAPA archives
5. INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS. Buenos Aires is continually growing as a multicultural global city, sharing ideas, inspiration and influence with countries around the world in areas as diverse as counter-terrorism and fashion design. It's home to one of South America's busiest ports and is a major tourist destination. Studying in Argentina will help you better understand international politics and security as well as the country's relationship with the United States. There are common strategic interests in a number of areas such as counternarcotics, the continual fight against human trafficking and maintaining the strength of commercial ties between the two countries. Experience in Buenos Aires and exposure to the specific issues the country faces will be an asset when it comes to applying for jobs along the pathway of an international relations career whether you choose to focus on conflict and peace-making, foreign policy, human rights, trade or security.
Photo: International airport from the CAPA archives
6. LAW. If a career in law - particularly international law - is in your future, studying abroad in Buenos Aires will give you exposure to the different legal structures that are in place in the city itself and a better understanding in general of the practice of law in Latin America. You'll learn about the legal principles and practices that are in place here, the challenges legal systems face in this growing, dynamic region of the world, about legal history and about policy around key issues like access to justice and human rights. Argentina operates around a civil law system with a constitution in place, justice being administered by both federal and provincial courts, but like any legal system, there are many complexities and intricacies to comprehend. As it is a country with important trade links to the United States, you may one day find yourself advising clients who have business interests in Argentina, especially as economic borders allow more trade and collaboration between nations.
Photo: Constitution of Argentina from the CAPA archives
7. FINANCE & BUSINESS. Did you know that it's not unusual for executives to hold a meeting at 8pm in Buenos Aires and that business dinners are more common than business lunches (when most people go home to eat)? Personal relationships are valued here and must be developed before business is done which means meetings can involve a considerable amount of small talk around family life, soccer, history and culture, for example. Learn more about business customs in Argentina and in Latin America as a whole by studying abroad in BA. The small details can make or break a deal so you'll benefit by learning the nuances and traditions if you have international business ambitions. You'll also begin to understand the intricacies of financial systems here, the way money is managed and moved, how the banking sector operates and about the increasing need for sound financial planning, analysis and advice as the economy shifts.
Photo: Buenos Aires Stock Exchange from the CAPA archives
8. MANAGEMENT. International experience is becoming more and more essential for managers to become well-rounded leaders in our increasingly diverse workplaces. Managers who understand the importance of multicultural awareness and encourage appreciation of different viewpoints in the office foster creativity and innovation among their staff. While you're in Buenos Aires, you'll be learning to communicate in another language. Even if you don't later go on to work in a Spanish speaking environment or even end up overseeing business operations in other countries, you'll be increasing your communication skills and your confidence too. You'll be learning about the values of a new community, the nuances and challenges of doing business in Argentina, problem solving from a Latin American viewpoint and - whether it's in the office at an internship or simply buying a bus ticket - how to interact with people who come from a different background than you in a number of situations throughout your time abroad.
Photo: Buenos Aires from the CAPA archives
9. MARKETING. With more than 55 million Latin Americans now living in the US, this is a market that's close to home. No matter which industry you're representing in your future career as a marketer, it's likely a population that you'll benefit from understanding. And what better way to familiarize yourself than by living and studying abroad in a country where the majority of marketing efforts are targeting local Latin Americans? You'll learn about the culture and what speaks to this audience, how language factors in, why digital and mobile are key, how important family is and how relationships are created and nurtured. You might notice products by popular international brands you're familiar with from home who approach their marketing strategy in a completely different way in Argentina than they do in the United States which shows that extensive research and knowing how to speak to your audience is key. You may be able to research online, but true comprehension comes through experience.
Photo: Example of marketing in Buenos Aires from the CAPA archives
10. EDUCATION. With one of the highest levels of literacy among Latin American countries at 98%, Argentina takes education seriously. There's a well-planned system in place with kindergarten available from ages two through five and compulsory education thereafter. Many students go on to attend either state or private universities. While you're taking classes in Buenos Aires, you'll be enrolled through Austral University which means you'll be adjusting to different teaching methods and learning models as well as improving your Spanish. You'll find that living abroad will expose you to a variety of new academic perspectives and help to prepare you for your future as an educator by broadening your cultural knowledge. Classrooms in the United States are becoming more and more diverse with many students speaking English as a second language. You'll learn how to interact across cultures and be able to better connect with your own students in a future teaching role.
Photo: Buenos Aires art by Garry Hunter
Through CAPA Buenos Aires, you will get to know Argentina at a deep and personally impactful level. Even if you plan on living in the United States for your whole life, you will benefit immensely from a study abroad experience in Argentina. Experience in this country will impact your career in the future. Why not get a step ahead now?