Semester 2, 2017 exchange
Ramon Llull, La Salle, Barcelona
I wish I knew sooner… the opportunity to study abroad has been one of the most amazing experiences of my life. Learning in a different culture, living in a different culture and the ability to travel whilst studying has proven to be a once in a lifetime opportunity. If I could give any advice to ACU students it would be to save your electives and use them to study a semester abroad. If it wasn’t for my law and global studies degree I would not have studied abroad, nor did I think it would be possible due to the course enrolment guides that show you what semester you should be completing each unit and what year. Take the course enrolment guides as a guide, and as adjust it to suit you, ensuring the units that require prerequisites are taken in order. Some units must be completed in Australia due to course requirements; therefore saving electives is the easiest way to travel abroad for study. ACU has over 190 international university connections, so I guarantee there will be a country that suits you or a country that you desire to travel to. Studying abroad allows you to travel before entering the workforce upon the completion of your degree, so why wouldn’t you take the opportunity.
Upon my arrival I was told to expect to constantly eat whilst living in Barcelona, this proved to be true. Tapas and paella are Spain’s main cuisine, which are absolutely delicious. Whilst living abroad I have found myself eating my way through Europe, from pizza and pasta in Italy, gyros in Greece, to pastries and snails in Paris.
In Spain University runs from September till the end of January so I have just completed my mid-term exams, which proved to be extremely different to the Australian university system. Completing a part of my university degree in a different country did not only taught me how the Spanish complete university but how university is so different globally as I have spoken and worked with so many other exchange students who are studying in Spain.
I always get asked what my favourite country has been that I have to travelled to whilst being in Europe. To this day I struggle to answer this question as every country has a different culture and experience. Greece and Turkey where both beautiful countries, overflowing with culture, history and food, compared to Monaco which was so glamorous proving to be the lifestyle of the rich and famous. I have loved every minute of my travels; I have been enriched with so many different cultures and ways of life.
There’s a quote that said after you travel you won’t return as the same person, I believe this statement is true after studying abroad. You appreciate the people around you so much more, your country and how fortunate you truly are. Living abroad has made me extremely independent and more mature as I wasn’t able to depend on the people around me anymore.