Exploring Australia and ACU Campuses in Six Days

By Channthou Vay

In November, I had the opportunity to travel to Australia for six days, fulfilling a childhood dream of mine. Before the trip, I was nervous and excited; I would have never thought I would have a chance to visit a developed country, like Australia.

I would like to sincerely thank ACU (Australian Catholic University) for inviting me to join the Key Partner Forum.  ACU organized the event for education counsellors from different countries to experience the university in person, gain some general knowledge about its programmes and offerings, which allows the counsellors to best represent the university.

The university has seven campuses across Australia: Adelaide, Ballarat, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney (North Sydney and Strathfield). There are four faculties: education and arts, health sciences, law and business, and theology and philosophy. Each school provides undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD programmes. Moreover, ACU has achieved placements in the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings[i], QS World University Rankings in 2018[ii], QS Rankings by Subject in 2017 [iii] and, most recently, the Young University Rankings in 2017[iv], making it a top institution to study at.

Ms Channtou Vay in front of the ACU logo

I was invited to visit the ACU campuses in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney; it was a life-changing experience for me both professionally and personally. The trip helped me a lot in my role as a study abroad counsellor because now I can tell students the information they need more precisely through what I experienced during my trip, both in visiting the campuses and the country. I can better explain what ACU buildings and facilities are like, how they can find the student support centre and enrol in their classes, where things are located and a lot more through my personal experience. I can also better explain the Australian culture, transportation methods, what the food, environment, and weather is like, among other characteristics, you can only share when you’ve visit somewhere. ACU is a university for students who look beneath the surface and obvious measures of success; it is a place for students who have a larger purpose for their education and life path.

There were several key things I noticed in all three states I visited. From the beginning, I was amazed at how people obeyed the traffic regulations and cared for the environment. Traffic ran smoothly, the surroundings were clean, and I felt safe and secure in each city, making me feel comfortable throughout my trip. My first impression of the Australian standard of living was great - the people are caring, respectful and helpful in nature. There were several occasions where I was lost or trying to get somewhere and locals would offer to help me find my way. These kind gestures really made a positive impact on my time in Australia.

My plane landed safe and sound in Brisbane and once I arrived I felt a burst of excitement! On the first day I was able to explore the city and on the second day, I visited the ACU Brisbane campus. Everything was really nice, including the buildings, parking spaces, facilities, environment, and the friendly and supportive staff.

A group of smiling counsellors who toured around together

My next destination was Sydney, one of the most famous cities in Australia, which also has the largest population of international students. When I visited the ACU North Sydney campus, I found it to be a very convenient location for students to commute to and from. I was also able to visit the Opera House, which is one of the world’s most visited tourist attractions. It was nice to experience Sydney’s city lifestyle and fun environment

My trip ended in Melbourne, which is another popular city in Australia. The ACU campus in Melbourne also, had modern buildings and facilities, a clean environment, and friendly and supportive staff to best guide students on their journey. I enjoyed visiting the classrooms, library, art building, and nursing classrooms equipped with the necessary resources for students studying nursing to practice. I believe that ACU provides not only the best education system, but also a space for practical lessons which allows all the students to supplement their studies.  

All in all, I love that I was able to meet expert representatives while building a network with hundreds of respective students. I believe ACU is a suitable place for both local and international students to be able to enjoy the student lifestyle. Even though it was just six days and I only went to three states in Australia I believe that throughout Australia you can find good security, a peaceful environment, a high standard of living, a world-class education system, many job opportunities and kind-hearted people. I love Australia and I will continue to recommend the country to students and tourists.

[i] https://www.timeshighereducation.com/world-university-rankings/australian-catholic-university

[ii] https://www.topuniversities.com/universities/australian-catholic-university#wurs

[iii] https://www.topuniversities.com/subject-rankings/2017

[iv] https://www.timeshighereducation.com/world-university-rankings/australian-catholic-university

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