Adam is currently studying at Santa Clara University, in California. Here, he blogs about the new things he’s seeing and doing while at SCU!
Studying In California is pretty darn cool in itself! Sometimes I have to pinch myself to make sure I’m really here, it is very surreal! It’s a different experience entirely to studying at university in Australia. I’m not sure exactly what it is, but I think there is definitely a much bigger social element here, than is present in Australian Universities – especially with a lot of students living on campus.
There are clubs and activities for all sorts of things:
- An Into the Wild club for those who want to go see some national parks or go on hikes on the weekends.
- An art museum on campus.
- A large scientific based observatory for star gazing.
- A full length swimming pool and gym.
- You can catch a fully packed Santa Clara Broncos Basketball match at the full sized stadium game on campus, or you can watch it on ESPN from your room!
The grounds are kept immaculately like a tropical resort.
The coolest thing I have done so far?
It’s pretty hard to pinpoint one thing, but I have to say that I have enjoyed a couple of the long weekends and weekend breaks in general. Most recently I flew down to LA for a 3-night trip to visit a friend, it was great to see Hollywood and stay right on Santa Monica Beach. We managed to get tickets to an NBA Los Angeles Lakers game, which was probably the best basketball game I have ever experienced!
Another weekend the exchange students (Netherlands, Swedish, Spanish students and myself) hired a car and drove down the Pacific Coast Highway (Route 1) to Santa Barbara and back. We saw Elephant Seals resting along the beach with their newborns and that was pretty amazing, it was like David Attenborough was going to jump out and give us a quick guide himself!
It’s also really great being so close to San Francisco, we have done a few trips there and back and it’s only about a 30-minute drive. One great thing about Santa Clara is that the university is located right next to the Caltrain station so you can take trips to San Fran, Santa Cruz, and Monterrey which are not too far away. You also have a local airport right here so you can take a flight literally anywhere for a long weekend or for spring break. I’m planning on flying down to Vegas or Mexico after the Semester!
Studying here is great too, and the teachers are very friendly. It is definitely not easy and there is a fair level of work to do, but if you’re a person who can manage your time well, then you should be fine.
Another great thing is the people! Americans really do love Australians and our accent. It’s very easy to make friends, and I definitely have made some lifelong friends.
Exchange really is a great experience, and now that I am experiencing it, I think it really is an essential thing to do for any university student, wherever you are or wherever you go!