I am less intense and anxious and I am enjoying life a lot more after study abroad Past Review

By (Clinical Exercise Science, Ithaca College) for

Griffith University: Gold Coast - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I would go it again as much as I could if I had the money. I can't say enough good things about the people I met, the places I went and everything I gained. While I am poor and trying to get settled back into American life, I find I have to actively stop myself from thinking about everything that had just happened in my life. I consider myself a cultured, open person. I love learning about new cultures, art, architecture and history. I always want to learn more and travel more places, and being abroad has made my travel ich even bigger. I grew a lot as a person and can differences in myself and the way I view different situations. I am less intense and anxious and I am enjoying life a lot more now. It was truely a once in a lifetime experience and I don;t think it could have been better. Now I need to go visit my new friends in their home countries.

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: Griffith University, Gold Coast
The term and year this program took place: Spring 2009

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The uni is great, I could have out more work into my academics, but that wasn't a focus of mine. You get the academic experience you want, and if it is straight up academics, you can get it at Griffith. If it is not, you can get through your classes and do all the "play" and travel you want.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Overall, the program at Griffith is very strong. They get back to you in a timely basis and really like having study abroad students. They try to make things as easy as possible.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I lived in an apartment that was associated to the uni through an outside company known as The Village. It housed mainly international students, but was primarily Americans. It is within walking distance of campus. The Village does a lto fo community activities and events that are great to meet people and give you something different to do then just go to Surfers Paradise. The complex has a pool and bball court as well as a TV room and computers. There is internt acess in all rooms as well as basic TV. The apartments are a good size and hold either 2 people or 5. All bedding and towels are given as a study abroad package, so bringing them is not necessary. <br /><br /> I gave it a 4 because it is close to campus, but it is fairly far from Surfers Paradise and the beach. I suggest living in Surfers if you can, though the Village was great and a lot of fun. It is totally and completely safe, as is Surfers. Great Place!

* Food:

I had the flexibility to prepare and cook my own meals, so I always had what I wanted. There is no meal plan, so it's cooking for yourself or ordering/buying food. The food in Australia has no preservatives and is way more healthy then here in the US, so your body does feel these changes. As a result, I had a lot of friends (esp male) who lost weight while they were there.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I did not go through a program, but the Study Abroad office there did hold events and really made it easy to meet people. They also kept you up to date on any events the uni was offering, such as themed parties, intramural games, or give aways and promos from the local community.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

As a student at uni there, we were required to have international health insurance, which covered any problems you may have had. I used for on visit to the doctor, and I found it not much different from the US. The doctors there are very capable and willing to help, esp international students. Overall Surfers is very safe. I had no problems. The bars there are open until 5am. I went out there quite often during the day and at night and never say a physical fight or felt unsafe at any time.

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


* 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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $100 AUD. That covered food, laundry and public transport. Though it was a little much, you could get away with less. Some of my roommates did it on $80 AUD, it just depends how you want to spend your money on food. I bought a lot of fruits and vegetables as well as meats, so those really raise your costs as opposed to buying cereal and yogurt or mac and cheese, which is what many of my roommates did.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Australia is a very expensive country. When I was there the exchange rate was very in our favor which really helped, however it is starting to get back to 1:1, so the expenses will be more. Bathroom needs stuff and alcohol are the things that really stick out as way more expensive then in the US. I would bring enough toiletries to get you through your time, that also frees up space in your suitcase for everything you thing you buy. Visas, papers, insurance.. all extra expenses. In the Village, lundry is not free, that was another unexpected difference.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Do eveything you wanted to do. Don't hold back and bring as much money as possible. I would suggest giving up birthdays and christmas to have your parents fund a trip, or your day of sky diving. Hvae no regrets or you will always regret them. Make it what you want it to be and don't skip something cause you don't have anyone to go with...!!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Sports Psychology

Course Department:
Instructor: Greg Reddan
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Good course. Very textbook oriented, with good lab and out of lecture activities to accompany lecture learning.
Credit Transfer Issues: none. just get it checked off before you go.
Course Name/Rating:

Business Communication

Course Department:
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This course really wasn't interesting and I didn't get much out of it. However, it did fulfill a major requirement for me, so it was worth taking if you need it.
Credit Transfer Issues: none, had it approved before I left.
Course Name/Rating:

Management Concepts

Course Department:
Instructor: Jillian
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This course was helpful in getting into some basic business and management issues and concepts.
Credit Transfer Issues: Came through fine, has it approved ahead of time.
Course Name/Rating:

Business Statistics

Course Department:
Instructor: Clifton
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This course was very tough, but they gave a lot of chances to do well in it. As in, they gave practice tests and are very open for help, including to days of review and help sessions before the test with no appointment necessary. It covered all basic statics and counted as my statics requirement.
Credit Transfer Issues: no problems, had it signed off ahead of time.