Becoming Extraordinary at St. Bonaventure University
Ali Mulvehill, a sophomore education major at St. Bonaventure University, has been blessed with the opportunity to study abroad in Australia for three months. Arriving in the land down under on August 28, 2013 and returning home December 15, 2013, life time experiences and memories will be cherished forever.
Before my first step onto campus, I knew I was in love with my new home. Waterfall stairs leading down to a lake acting as the center of campus brought a sparkle to my eyes. I was unsure of where to go first to get my room assignment, clearly indicated by my facial expressions, and was soon approached by a local Aussie. My first interaction with the natives was a preview to how everyone in this country would treat me. Everyone is genuinely excited to talk, helpful with the information they present, and never in a rush (perhaps why they’re always late).
My first day of orientation soon turned into my first day of classes a week later. One thing I quickly learned is that days here fly by because there is always something to keep me occupied. Classes here differ from Bonaventure due to the size differences. For each class there is a 2 hour lecture followed by an hour tutorial. The lectures consist of 30-40 students and the “tuits” are about 10, which I am much more comfortable with.
Another major difference in the Land Down Under is the food. Sometimes I wonder why everyone here appears to look very in shape. Then I go out to eat and find my answer. The portion sizes here are about half of what we’d get at home. Also, about 99% healthier. They don’t eat/serve nearly as much greasy, fried foods and consume much fresher foods. While I am all about eating healthier, I find myself buying two dinners at the dining hall, or eating snacks after paying $30 for a nice dinner out.
I believe that the biggest difference between Australia and New York deals with prices. The average lunch (sandwich) meal here costs about 20 dollars, where at home it would be about 8. A roatisarie chicken is $10.50, but about $6 at home. To buy disposable razors, I have to spend about 20 dollars. With this being said, it makes sense that prices are so high because the minimum wage is around 18-20 dollars per hour. This almost influenced me to get a job while I’m here, almost.
With all the differences put aside, Australia has managed to make me feel at home. I believe that this has to do with the friendly people and small, welcoming campus. Time is flying by, I can’t wait to create more memories and go on amazing adventures!