Austraila: You won't want to come back! Past Review

By (Cardinal Stritch University) - abroad from 07/18/2017 to 11/18/2017 with

AIFS: Wollongong - University of Wollongong with Fiji option

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned how to be more independent and how to make friends more easily. I also gained more global awareness by interacting with the culture.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The university of Wollongong was a very updated, beautiful campus that had many different resources to offer to students. The classes were very interesting and the instructors were very knowledgeable about what they were teaching students. The course work was very challenging, but if you put the work in to it, you will do well.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Due to me being the first student to take part in this program from America it felt as though I was jumping through a lot of hoops in order to get into contact with them. When I did get in contact, they always were helpful.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The housing situations were perfect for what I needed. I stayed at International House which means that I was with other international students as well as Australians. This really helped me meet people from around the world and they really made you feel like family while living there. I would HIGHLY recommend living there.

* Food:

They had many good options, but if you have special dietary needs I would not recommend living here as it is difficult to get vegetarian or gluten free food.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The local culture was what really sold it for me. The people are very friendly and helpful. It also is a bigger city, so it has many opportunities for you to explore the city.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

While at the University of Wollongong they require that you have a special kind of healthcare service called BUPA, which was helpful for if you needed to see a health professional on campus, but if not most places did not take BUPA cards so you had to pay out of pocket. The health care system was similar, but also different. In order to get medication you had to go to the doctor, then get a written slip requesting medication, then take it to a pharmacy to get filled.

* Safety:

It was very safe and the campus police were very helpful if you got into a bad situation.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

The location was ideal. I was able to go to Sydney on a whim as well as explore Melbourne, Brisbane, and Cairns with minimal flight time. The University was beautiful, updated, and very helpful. The city was vibrant and full of life! I just can't say enough about how great it was.


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

The price for things is very expensive so it is very easy to go over budget, so make sure that you have extra money on you at all times.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I tried to budget about $50 a week.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? I suggest that you download an app to keep track of your spending while abroad because it is very easy to go over budget. I also suggest that you make a budget before you leave and make sure that you have extra money encase you do go over budget.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
  • Hostel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The University
  • The Location
  • The People
* What could be improved?
  • The Organization of AIFS
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had known more of the abbreviations that the Australians use before I came so that it was easier for me to understand them.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!