After a long flight and a couple days recovering from the jet lag, it didn’t take long to settle in. Curtin University has been by far one of the friendliest places I’ve ever been. Everyone has been so accommodating and are very understanding that studying abroad can be quite a big deal, especially for those who have never travelled alone before. There are so many services available to all students for when you’re struggling academically, financially or personally and these are discussed openly by staff and student representatives.
As I arrived early, our accommodation team (UniLodge) arranged several activities to help everyone get to know one another as new people began to arrive. These included a silent disco, speed friending, pancake breakfasts, make your own wraps and a tour of the city.
These events helped me to settle in much faster and I’ve been able to meet students from all over the world, including those from Germany, The Netherlands, Norway, USA, Vietnam, China, etc.
The following week was our Orientation where the campus was bustling with fun events which you could book online with a personalised planner. I attended several tours, another speed friending, a volunteering information session and an official Aboriginal welcome which included a fascinating smoking ceremony by the Elder of the Whadjuk Nyungar tribe. What I found most admirable was how each staff member and student ambassador would pause before their talk to pay their respects to the Whadjuk Nyungar elders past, present and emerging and acknowledged their ownership of the land which the university was built upon.
At the end of the week, we took a trip to Caversham Wildlife Park to meet some adorable Australian animals!
The campus is absolutely beautiful and covered in art, which makes me very happy! Furthermore, it is a very green and environmentally friendly place with a strong emphasis on outside living which is understandable as the weather has been so lovely!
My advice to those considering study abroad is to not overload yourself and to take it easy. It’s very tempting to sign up to several guilds (societies/ clubs), take the maximum amount of units as well as to book in several trips. I did this and am now trying my best to simplify it all down. Remember you are here to study but also to embrace the culture you’ve decided to immerse yourself in so keep in mind the work-life balance we should all be aiming for.
Studying abroad is a great way to take a fresh look at your studies, to try units/ modules not available back home and to perfect your work- life balance. I never would have thought I’d be taking a virtual reality course but I already love it. In short, studying abroad has been like a fresh start for me and has really boosted my passion for my course. Everyone’s experience will be different but it is a very valuable thing to do and a great opportunity no matter where you go or what you study. Thank you Reading Abroad!