As my time in Australia comes to a close, I have had some time to reflect on some aspect of this experience. I am very grateful for the family with which I have stayed and the friend which I have made. The opportunity to not only travel in Australia but also to New Zealand, Bali, and other surrounding countries has been incredible. I will cherish this experience for the rest of my life. Thank you also to Texas A&M for the opportunity to participate in this reciprocal exchange, without the help of the fantastic university, I would have not known about this incredible opportunity. Australia has left me with some great lasting feelings. The culture is very inclusive and unique. It is a hybrid of proper English upbringing with a flare of souther hospitality. Being a Texan, I feel right at home in this place. This country is a melting pot of cultures from all of the world and QUT is truly a university for the modern world . I would recommend studying abroad in Brisbane, Australia to anyone. Brisbane needs more Aggies!  Gig ‘ em!

Categories: 2019, Australia, Reciprocal Exchange

I have settled in nicely to life down under. There have been a few drastic changes. First, school is very different in Australia. It is more isolated. Without school sponsored housing, uni students live with their families at home throughout the duration of their studies. This presents a challenge to meet new people, as most students see university as we in America see high school; go to school than return home. Nevertheless, the university students I have had the chance to get to know have been welcoming, polite, and curious about life in America.

There is a school run bar on campus and it is open from 8am to 5pm. I think that is all that needs to be said about that.

My host family has been the highlight of the experience so far. Hosting 4 other international students plus two kids of their own, the house is busy but certainly feels like a home. Courtesy of the culinary inclined international student from Japan, Germany, and Taiwan, every night is a spectacular display of cuisine from around the world. American burgers and BBQ will always be king, but Asian style beef is a close second.

Weekend trips are big thing here. Everywhere from Sydney to Byron Bay to the Gold Coast are flooded with university students every weekend. Brisbane is a quieter city, but it knows its place and offers a nice balance between city life and fun.


Thanks and Gig ’em!

Categories: 2019, Australia, Reciprocal Exchange

I am finally done with school! Finals went well although they were very different from our typical exams. Every exam I had was essay formatted…in one of my exams I wrote 10 pages and didn’t even complete it!! My overall Uni experience was amazing. I loved the lecture/ tutorial format. It made the classes more personal and I definitely wish we had the same format at A&M.  Most of my friends have either left or are leaving in the next few days. It’s sad to see them go but I am incredibly blessed to have had the opportunity to meet such dynamic people. I have friends in Germany, Sweden, Denmark, England, Scotland, Brazil, China, and Australia now!!! I definitely feel much more multi-cultural and an appreciation for internationals, especially travelers.

Now that Uni is done with I am off to traveling! I will be visiting Victoria for a week, Northern Territory for 2 weeks and then heading up to Southeast Asia for a week before I leave to go home!

This experience is one I will never forget and I am incredibly appreciative of the opportunity to study abroad. My biggest advice to future study abroad students (which everyone should be!) is to embrace the culture. It is easy to fit in and make friends with the international students, however to truly have an experience make sure to connect with locals. I lived with two Aussies and worked at a bar with Aussies, so that really helped me embrace the culture. Also connecting with locals is a great way to get car rides, see the country in a new light, and hear the best places to eat and entertain! Some of my best friends live here and I can’t wait to see them again one day!


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Categories: 2014, Australia, Reciprocal Exchange