Helene Skaane Osmundsen from Western Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL) studying at USC Sunshine Coast

Favourite course during my study abroad semester

one-of-the-few-photos-i-have-of-myself-e1571794093409.jpgMy name is Helene, and I am currently studying a bachelor’s degree of Nature Based Tourism and Nature Guiding at the Western Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL Sogndal). I have always wanted to study abroad, but the last time I had the opportunity I didn’t dare to take the chance. I was too scared of missing out on everything that might happen back home while being away, and also of being too shy to get to know new people. Ever since then I’ve had this feeling of “what if”, so when I finally got the opportunity to study abroad in Australia during one semester of my degree, I instantly knew I had to take it. This is a decision I definitely do not regret.

As an outdoor enthusiastic person, it came natural for me to choose some of the Outdoor Environmental Study courses that the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) has to offer during their Semester 2. One of these being “Learning in Australian Landscapes”, or more commonly referred to as OES104. This class turned out to become my favourite subject during my semester at USC and here are a couple of the reasons why;

Biking on Fraser

Field trips!

I mean, who doesn’t like going on adventures as parts of their learning experience? During the semester we’ve gone on four different excursions. We’ve had two day trips, where one was a climbing & abseiling trip, while the other one focused on kayaking. In addition to these, we’ve also spent some time overnight camping. The first overnight trip was separated into a day of hiking and a day of kayaking, and the last trip was a three days trip to Fraser Island, which is the largest sand island in the world.

Great focus on international students

I think more than 90% of the students in this class were internationals, and because of that most of us were in the same boat. We didn’t know too many people when the semester started, and having this in common made it easy to interact with one another. dingo-on-fraser.jpgI’ve spent a lot of time outside of uni with a group of people from this class, and a few of us are also doing a month-long road trip together as soon as our final assignment has been delivered!

In addition to the main points mentioned above, the course also consists of interesting topics such as, how the Australian landscape has been formed, what makes Australian flora and fauna both unique and vulnerable or ecological succession. The teachers have been really friendly and I’m so glad that I got to have this course as a part of my education.

– Helene Skaane Osmundsen @heleneskaane




Hein van Eeden from South Africa studying a Bachelor of Education (Secondary)/Recreation & Outdoor Environmental Science at USC Sunshine Coast

SydneyHi, I am Hein van Eeden from South Africa. I started my Bachelor of Education (Secondary)/Bachelor of Recreation and Outdoor Environmental Studies on the 22nd of February 2019 and will finish my degree at the end of 2022.

I have been at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) for 7 months and have had so many positive experiences. USC staff and students on campus are always there to help. The quality of education that I have received at USC up until now is certainly of the highest standard. I have been exposed to many different cultures around campus as USC is a renowned University for students all over the world. The University offers many sports, both competitive and social for those who just want to enjoy the activity. The University is built on a nature reserve spanning 100 hectares, with many different species of animals that can be spotted around campus. There are many different cafés and eateries on campus, each one offering a different experience.

Public transport is easily accessible from the USC campus and makes it easy to explore astonishing places on offer on the Sunshine Coast. One of my favourite places, Mooloolaba has some of the best beaches and a great nightlife, and certainly a great place to watch the sunset. The internationally renowned, Noosa, is 40 minutes north of campus. It has beautiful scenic places and amazing wildlife. There are many surf competitions all year round which makes Noosa the place to be. Interstate travel makes it easy to explore the diversity of the vast country and to experience the different scenery, communities, and cultures. Travelling in Australia never has a dull moment because the locals are friendly, and they are always keen to share their knowledge on the area.

My experience at USC has certainly been enjoyable and I would encourage students to study at USC as they will not regret it.

– Hein Van Eeden @heinve