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Will is a Wildlife major who studied abroad in Tasmania, Australia!

1) Describe your Education Abroad program(s): During the fall 2015 semester I studied at the University of Tasmania, in Tasmania, Australia. My classes were in the Marine and Antarctic Science Department. During the semester I got to visit New Zealand for ten days and also got to scuba dive the Great Barrier Reef! In my favorite class (International Marine Management) we had new lecturers every week and several of them were United Nations Secretaries and advisors working on projects that were central to the course!

2) Is this a good program for other students in your major? I studied through the Magellan Exchange, and through them and my unit I was able to take whichever classes I wanted. This allows for compatibility with most of our majors! Specifically and bio, chem, engineering, etc. majors should try to do this. UTAS has the best marine program in Australia, and their other sciences are very high in ranking as well!

3) Was this your first time abroad? I have been abroad once before.

4) How do you feel that you benefitted from studying abroad? This program is different from the other ones here at Eastern in that everything is on you for planning. This was really nice in that I learned that I could successfully plan for a trip abroad with minimal help. It also really helped me go out of my comfort zone whether that was pushing my limits while freediving or being thrown into an Australian Rules Football Game. (This is nothing like our football!)

5) How do you think this experience will impact your future plans? This experience was a trial run for living abroad, and I am even more set on moving out of the country for work after graduation. It also gave me the confidence to travel alone.

6) Was there anything you were surprised by? Most of the stores closed at 4 or 4:30 in the afternoon, it definitely made grocery shopping around class difficult, but you get used to it really fast. Another little thing I wasn’t expecting was how clean the air is there, even in the city the air was clearer and cleaner than most of our secluded parks.

7) What other countries have you traveled to? In my sophomore year in high school I went on a mission trip to Uganda, and during this trip I went to New Zealand.

8) Favorite thing about studying abroad? Either getting to ski at the location of the 2015 Worlds Winter Games in New Zealand (we missed the US Alpine team by a day!), or diving in the Great Barrier Reef and seeing the oldest known turtle on the reef (he was the size of four of us with all of our gear on!). But the friendships I made at the least expected times were the best. There are people I met in my short time in New Zealand who I still talk to on a daily basis, and same goes for some of the people I met during my three days on the dive boat.

9) Suggestions for future students? If you are hesitant to do something that’s out of your comfort zone GO DO IT! Take every opportunity you have to travel while you’re there, you never know when you will get back or what else will happen while you are there!

Published on March 01, 2016

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