Inès Naceur from Paris Business School/Studies UP in France studying abroad at USC Sunshine Coast

inesMy name is Inès Naceur, I am 21 years old and I come from Paris, France. I am at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) because for my 3rd year in the business school, where I have to do a one-year university exchange. Back in France I am studying at the PSB Paris Business School.

I decided to come to the Sunshine Coast because, first of all, I had heard many positive things from former students of my school, and I wanted to leave the city. I have lived in Paris for 21 years, and with the option to live near the beach, surrounded by exotic animals such as kangaroos and koalas, made me dream. Moreover, the campus is large and full of greenery, and living in such a place is an incredible opportunity. In the end, I didn’t hesitate once and decided to come to USC.

Places I’ve explored

2It is very easy in Australia to make friends, so I was lucky enough to be able to discover several incredible places near the Sunshine Coast. Indeed, during the holidays, I was able to do a road trip to the Whitsundays, which are islands in the north of the Sunshine coast. I am surprised at the size of the country. On the map it doesn’t seem that far away. Noosa, being my favourite place for the moment, is nevertheless closer to USC, which is a huge opportunity because the beaches are heavenly.

Another of my great memories is when I first arrived at USC were being able to touch a kangaroo, a snake and a koala brought to campus by Wildlife HQ Zoo during Orientation Week. It was a wonderful welcome! Surfing at Alexandra Headlands is also one of our favourite pastimes here, and I must admit that I’m not disappointed because that’s exactly what I thought of Australian life. During our road trip, we also saw Rainbow beach, which is a huge beach, with colours on the hill, yet another breathtaking landscape. At Cape Hillsborough, we saw kangaroos on the beach, and it was once again an unexpected and feasible experience only in Australia.

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Unfortunately, some of my friends will have to leave in a few months because they are here for only 6 months, but I am very happy to be here until June 2020 because leaving in a few months would have given me a feeling of unfinished business. There are so many beautiful places to discover.

When I leave, I will miss the kangaroos, the teachers (who, unlike my country, are very close to the students and really want to help them and make them progress), the kindness of the Australians, and the landscapes like nowhere else…

In conclusion, this beginning of adventure and studies in Australia is only positive and I look forward to better discover this country I love. I couldn’t have dreamt of a better way to break my Parisian routine and go on an adventure!

– Inès Naceur @ines.ncr

Do you want to know more about studying at USC? Click here and enquire now!

Sairah Benz Alonzo from the Philippines (AMS BridgeBlue) studying a Master of Business Administration at USC Sunshine Coast

IMG_0731Beep beep! *Benz Alonzo about to park!* 

Hey there – I’m Sairah Benz Alonzo. Feel free to call me Benz (yes, just like the car Mercedes-Benz). I accomplished my bachelor’s degree in University of Asia and the Pacific, Philippines. Currently, I’m taking up my master’s degree in Business Administration at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC).

Healthy Habits When Visiting the Sunshine Coast Beaches

I’m surprised on how accessible it is for anyone in this state to head down to the nearest coastline. Approximately by 10-20 mins, I could find myself lost in the breeze of Sunshine Coast beaches. Later on, I’ve learned new practices which I like to apply when facing the waves of the ocean. Allow me to share these with you!

Find Peace

Discovering the hush and solitude of what the beach can offer us – silence. Silence, along with the lullaby of waves, brings in peace. If you want more of this, Sunshine Coast is the place to be.

Breathe in, breathe out… Take a deep breath for 5 mins (or up to you!). In a moment, you’ll surprisingly find yourself blending with the serenity of the waves. If it helps, think of short affirmations when breathing in (I breathe in peace) and breathing out (I breathe out confidence). This way, it is purposeful + clearer calm-seeking thoughts.

Seek Aspirations

From time to time, it’s helpful to take a pause and look far at the ocean. Begin with thinking of what you’d like to achieve in life then take note of them. Once you’ve collected your aspirations, it’s pretty cool to treat the beach as your audience. Speak out loud that truth inside yourself! What you’ll face will never judge you but listen intently.

Visualise dreams  

After repeating those dreams, start visualising the “HOW” little by little. I myself, visualise how my week will go: as small as waking up early for attending USC classes -> focusing in lectures -> working out in between breaks -> doing some self-study in another field of work -> plus so on and so forth. Practice that creativity in your imagination. Which by the way, Sunshine Coast has the best background music for this.

Sweat them off

For starters, I love to walk along the shoreline of the beach. While walking, I was able to observe how certain locals incorporate different sets of physical lifestyle: running, yoga, sports, and other fun activeness! And I reckon, anyone can do this! As Tony Robbins claim “motion creates emotion”. Truly, I’m pretty much inspired by the locals here.

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Read Read Read

When in Sunshine Coast, it is always ‘beach reading season’. Pack one book in your bag. Find a great spot and enjoy your time alone reading. Reading by the beach allows us to relax at the same time explore in between pages.

Write them down

The sea won’t be throwing shade on whatever thoughts you’ll be writing down. What’s important is, we lead our actions through mindfulness. Take your notebook/journal out and begin writing down your stories. You’ll be amazed on how long-term pens and papers can affect your life.

P.S. This article is inspired by the Miracle Mornings of Hal Elrod. I highly recommend this book for everyone to read.

–  Sairah Benz Alonzo @sairahalonzo

Do you want to know more about studying at USC? Click here and enquire now!

 

 

Sophia Gollwitzer from Amberg-Weiden University of Applied Sciences in Germany studying a Master of Management at USC Sunshine Coast

d.pngMy name is Sophia and I am from Amberg-Weiden University of Applied Sciences in Germany and am currently attending a management program at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC). Overall, I will be staying in Australia for six months. I arrived here in July, and now I almost don’t want to think about when I have to return.

For the past three months, I have spent most of my time at USC and/or in the area. Because my German institution is quite small, I very much enjoy being back at a larger university with a beautiful campus. The open architecture of the buildings here is very different from that in Germany and gives you the feeling of being outdoors even though you aren’t. Another bonus of the campus is the wild kangaroos that can be spotted quite frequently. The overall atmosphere is a great mixture of nature and student life in a way that I have never experienced before. Besides, I love the Australian coffee culture, which is also very much appreciated on campus.

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hnIf I’ m not enjoying coffee at university, I like to spend my time in the immediate vicinity. Mooloolaba, Alexandra Headland, and Maroochydore offer beautiful beaches as well as some small, unique cafés and shops. I cycle a lot, so I quite often “stumble” over some exciting places that are an enrichment to my everyday life. But beware of the magpies – they like to attack when you cycle past their nests and has ended up in an accident for me. So much for Australia’s life-threatening animals: lessons learned! 😉

Since the sea and the beach are my happy places, there couldn’t be anything better than to spend some moments there every day, surf or enjoy the sunset. Apart from that, the area offers waterfalls to explore in the hinterland or the possibility to climb mountains and admire nature. Unfortunately, I only managed to climb in Brisbane, so the Glasshouse Mountains are at the top of the list for a climbing tour.

nEven though Brisbane is a bit further away, the city belongs to the joys of everyday life for me as well. Due to the short distance of only 2 hours train ride, I spend time there pretty frequently and get to visit my family and friends. Apart from the fact of being able to see my people here in down under regularly, I especially like the relaxed vibe of the city. For me, it appears very liveable and always offers something beautiful to discover or delicious food at any corner.

Looking back, I’m delighted to have decided to come back to Australia. I love my everyday life here. Fascinating to see how quickly time passes when you feel at home!

– Sophia Gollwitzer @soffie_zaem

Kristin Stefanie Peiker from the University of Applied Sciences Munich in Germany studying at USC Sunshine Coast

IMG_1894Wunya Ngulum! – Welcome Everyone
I’m Kristin, I am from Munich in Germany where I usually study Tourism Management at the University of Applied Sciences (MUAS). I have been studying at the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) these past two semesters for my bachelor’s degree in business.

Where to begin? USC and Down Under have changed my life. There is without a doubt nothing better than studying abroad. Since this wasn’t my first time coming to Australia and the Sunshine Coast region, settling in was easy and stress-free for me. It almost felt like coming home. Orientation week is a must if you can get here early enough to attend. This is where you get to make your first good contacts with other students and plenty of university organisations. So, don’t miss out.

So, here’s why you should come to USC for your studies abroad:
Ever wanted to go to the beach before you head to uni? Ever wanted to share your campus with the cutest kangaroos on earth? For me there’s absolutely nothing better than grabbing a cuppa (cup of coffee) and listening to the calming sounds of swaying palm trees while studying on campus. The USC staff, and everyone else on campus, are extremely helpful and always have a smile for you; you get this instant feeling of ‘home’.
IMG_3255One of the reasons why I chose USC is the great variety of courses they offer and their good reputation for preparing their students to really be successful in their future career paths. And having been here for a while I can now say it’s true; I learned so many valuable lessons for life.

I love going to the lectures and tutorials. Here at USC we all stick together and support each other wherever we can. Teaching staff is always there to help whether it is to further explain course content, or simply for a short chat.
Of course, uni is quite different from my studies in Munich as I have reports to write, presentations to hold and exams during the semester.

 

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Campus life! Oh, how can I best describe you? There’s nothing quite like it. Soft music melancholically playing in the backdrop at the cafes. People chatting or vigorously working on assignments; in the distance the usual clacking and roasting sounds from the coffee machines and from time to time a voice with ‘order for Kristin’ echoes. Doesn’t Balu‘s motto of the bare necessities of ‘peace and quiet’ fit perfectly? I got to meet people as crazy as me and people completely unlike me, and I became friends with all of them. I believe this is one of the perks of uni and of being abroad; you get to build this great multicultural network; the best of the very best. We suffered together when we, again started way to late on our assignments. We partied together when we finally, after long nights in front of your laptop, handed them in and we travelled together – of course, the actual reason why you study abroad.

Don’t just come here for your semester and bring some time to travel. Make sure to hop on a plane to Sydney or Melbourne. Or stay at Sunshine Coast and cruise around the hinterland. There’s plenty to see and explore for instance Noosa, the Sunshine Coasts’ golden child, is a must see! Before or after the lectures and on weekends I get to enjoy life to the fullest. Barbeques and rounds of beach volleyball at the beach, hopping from one Food & Wine Festival to the next, and exploring Fraser Island with our 4WD, the largest sand island in the world .

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Despite loads of work and a healthy portion of stress, I get the feeling of being on permanent holidays. And of course, this is also thanks to the many rays of sunshine. Not for nothing else is the region called Sunshine ‘Sunny’ Coast. So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and start your very own study abroad adventure!

– Kristin Peiker @kristinsteffi

 

Top 10 Photos from our International Students in 2019

In 2019, we have had a record year with over 500 photos tagged with @USC.International & #USCInternational on Instagram. Here are some of our favourites!

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@maggi95 visited the beautiful Glass House Mountains while studying at USC. Just a 20 minute drive from USC Sunshine Coast, and we assume the view was worth it!

 

 

 

 

 

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@philipppp93 took this amazing photo of a wombat when he visited Tasmania during his study break.

 

 

 

 

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@christiianaaaa went snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef during her semester break and we must say this is a pretty good photo to take away from the experience!

 

 

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Why not cuddle up with the Irwin family’s animals at Australia Zoo? Seems like this kangaroo didn’t mind the company of @haleymahony

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Don’t feel like climbing up a mountain, but would like a good view? @sophi.r0 took this amazing photo from the Glass House Mountain Lookout, located right next to the Bruce Highway.

 

 

 

 

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A place you must visit whilst studying at USC Sunshine Coast? Noosa National Park, only 35 min away from the University! @marcgrazz

 

 

 

 

 

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Surfing is a popular sport here in Australia and the Sunshine Coast is a prime spot in itself. This amazing sunrise photo was captured by @emilie_lie and @johanmarkusm whilst out paddling

 

 

 

 

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@ali_hannah2 enjoying her semester break on horseback – we would not say no to that!

 

 

 

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A very popular trip amongst our international students involves 4W driving up Fraser Island. Looks like @eggrem and his friends had a great time!

 

 

 

 

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@thomas.p.photography’s took some really spectacular photos of the stars, and our kangaroos here on campus. Not to mention, the two kangaroos playing at Cape Hillsborough

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

 

 

 

Julie Våga from HVL Sogndal in Norway – “TOP 5 Weekend Getaways” Whilst Studying at USC Sunshine Coast

Image-31-lanczos3Hello,

My name is Julie, and I am from the Norwegian University HVL Sogndal. I am currently studying at USC Sunshine Coast and have for the last year. As travelling is one of my biggest passions, I thought I would share a few tips for “weekend getaways” you could do whilst studying at USC Sunshine Coast.

Brisbane:

The closest city for that “big city feeling” is Brisbane, only an hour train ride away.

What to do in Brisbane? Visit the Lone Pine Sanctuary, the biggest koala sanctuary in the world, where you can hold koalas and feed kangaroos. During the hot summer days, Southbank is the place to be. Eat Street Northshore is also a must in Brisbane. Open every night Friday to Sunday, Eat Street is the best food market you will ever visit with food from all over the world and the craziest desserts you can think of.

You can also visit North Stradbroke Island or Moreton Island by ferry from Brisbane, either for the day or a few nights! Moreton Island is perfect for a day-trip and has the famous Tangalooma shipwrecks. North Stradbroke Island (or Straddie) is a beautiful island filled with wildlife and amazing beaches. Absolutely recommend the North Gorge walk, on this hike we spotted dolphins, whales, kangaroos and a turtle.

Rainbow beach (Inskip point)

Camping at Inskip point is a highly recommended weekend getaway! Either in a camper van or tent – or both. Crystal clear water and a view of Fraser Island. One of the highlights from my year “down under”.

Fraser Island (K’Gari)

A ferry ride from Rainbow beach is the famous Fraser island, the biggest sand island in the world. It was formed during the ice age by sand blown for New South Wales. It is also voted as the number seven “must seen beaches” in the world by National Geographic.

What to do? Except for the beautiful beaches, there is a shipwreck- the Maheno wreck that can be visited. As well as the famously known Lake McKenzie that is also on the island, which is a beautiful lake to go for a swim in. However, remember to respect the dingoes and follow Fraser Island rules as they roam free on the island.

Tip! Check out the courses on USC as some of them travel to Fraser Island. I went there on a school trip with OES104 (recommended for international students!)

Gold Coast

Gold Coast is a popular holiday destination, no surprise as it has a lot to offer. It has major shopping centres, more than 500 cafes and restaurants, rural hinterland, great nightlife, and is the home of several theme parks, including the Wet’n’wild and Warner Bros. Movie World. If you have the chance, you can also see the city from above in the Q1 tower.

Cafetips! I recommend “The Paddock Bakery”, a cozy backyard café with great food and a changing menu. I also recommend the vegan café “The Cardamon Pod”, offering great food and is very “insta friendly” (heheh).

Byron Bay

One of my favourite places in Australia – if not the world – is Byron. Just under 3 and a half hours by car from campus. It’s famous for the surfers, beaches, (the Hemsworth brothers) and the most powerful lighthouse in the country. I absolutely recommend the hike up to the lighthouse (alternatively an uber ride up there). It’s also the most easterly point in Australia. Look for whales and dolphins as they can be spotted from there.

Tip! If you don’t have a car, Adventure Dudes does trips with USC students a few times each semester, might be worth looking into at the International BBQ in Orientation Week.

Hope this gave you some inspiration for travelling around while studying at USC. For more pictures, check out my Instagram @julievaga, where I will also be more than happy to answer any questions you might have. You can also email future@usc.edu.au for more information.

– Julie Våga