It may be winter in the States, but in Australia, it’s sunny, warm, and mid-summer. What a great place to study abroad, right? Christine, a University of Delaware senior double major in English and Communication, is doing just that. Not only is she checking “Study Abroad” off her bucket list and adding it to her resume, Christine is applying professional skills every day. From managing her time to converting Fahrenheit to Celsius, Christine’s time abroad will benefit her in the workforce, as well as during classes in the spring.
Check out our interview with Christine below to read all about her adventures and experience in the land down under!
Studying abroad or know someone who is? Email Keri at firstname.lastname@example.org to be featured on the blog!
Double Major: English and Communication
Minors: History and Journalism
Expected year of graduation: Spring 2014
Where are you studying abroad? Australia!
A lot of factors attracted me to this trip. I was looking for a study abroad trip that would allow me to have enough time over winter break to be home with friends and family, while also getting to have wonderful experiences in another country. Thanks to the University of Delaware’s lengthy winter break, I got to spend the holidays at home and, when I return from the three-week trip, will still have two weeks before school starts to reflect on the program. As a history minor, I was happy to find a program with a course on Australian history and culture. And of course, going to Australia, escaping the winter for a bit, and the included visits such as a surf trip helped me make my decision too!
So far, some of my favorite places and activities have been the beautiful St. Kilda and Chelsea beaches, where we got free Jet Ski rides, venturing to the shops, pubs, clubs, etc, in the city of Melbourne, having surfing lessons at Bells Beach located near the Great Ocean Road, and watching the sunset at Sky High with a friend I have in Melbourne. Today, we will be visiting an aquarium, where they offer swimming with sharks, will be going on a wine tour Saturday, feeding kangaroos at the Melbourne sanctuary on Sunday, and on Monday, hope to visit the Twelve Apostles, a tour that is accompanied by a rain-forest walk. Every day we’re looking for new activities to do and its even better getting to experience them with a wonderful group of people.
What is one thing you’ve learned through the experience so far that you could take with you into the workforce (whether career or internship)?
There are ways to get work done, while also having a great time and getting to see as much as possible. It’s all about time management, which we have all been trying to take advantage of.
Taking classes, ha ha. But on a more serious note, the only thing that comes to mind is jet lag the first few days, though that went away really quickly. So similar to the question above, I would just say time management is important.
Any advice for students who may go on the same trip as you/visit the country one day?
I’ve found that throughout the world, people are normally happy to help and are usually seeking similar things: friendship, a good time, new experiences, etc. So don’t ever be afraid to ask for help. As for Australia specifically, here’s some advice:
2) The sun really is a lot stronger here, so definitely wear sunscreen with a high SPF, even if you tan easily. I forgot to put it on my back the first day and was half-lobster for a few days.
3) A lot of Australian people love trying to fool the ‘gullible Americans,’ so if they tell you there are such things as drop bears (koalas’ second cousins who descend on unknowing tourists and attack) that there are kangaroos hopping through the airport, or directions that seem a bit off, look at them a bit skeptically first and they’ll usually start laughing.
4) The Burger King here is called Hungry Jacks. Just remember, the portions are a lot smaller (healthier) here, so if you order a medium soda and burger, it will be the equivalent of our small!
5) Get the converter app on the iPhone from Fahrenheit to Celsius, to avoid looking befuddled when someone mentions how warm it is when its 30 degrees.
6) HAVE FUN! Studying abroad should be one of the best, most rewarding experiences in your life. I know it has been for me.
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