"The most amazing thing about my time abroad is the incredible impact pushing past my comfort zone had on not only my personality, but my perception of the world and it's different cultures. I find myself understanding more about different cultures and people, and as a result have become more knowledgeable and understanding of people and their backgrounds. It was amazing to become fully immersed into a completely different culture - although it was at times confronting and confusing, I would not give up the experience for anything. I at first considered studying abroad in perhaps the UK or USA, but I think it is far more beneficial to really push your comforts, and try immersing yourself in a culture that you are completely unfamiliar with. Would do it all over again!"
"Volunteering in Nepal was without a doubt one of the most rewarding and memorable experiences of my life. From the beautiful smiling people, to the breathtaking scenery, my time spent in Nepal was nothing less than spectacular. To any student thinking about volunteering overseas, my advice is to embrace the opportunity with open arms! Trust me, you will have the time of your life!"
"Choosing to go abroad is choosing to take the plunge into a new world. A world of new friendships, new experiences and freedom. You will gain a sense of responsibility and be empowered to make decisions independently. You will come home trying to convince all of your friends to take this leap and when they do, they will thank you for it. I try to convince almost everyone I come across, to at least think about the possibility of an overseas experience. No need to commit but do some research and discover some of the amazing places that you could visit. I promise you that no matter where you go you will have a fantastic time and make new friends from all over the world. I need to thank the International Office and iLead as without their help I wouldn't be able to say that I've lived, worked and traveled across 4 continents at the age of 22"
"I enjoyed the subtle cultural differences the most, everyone I met were so friendly and helpful. I'll never forget the friends i've made and the once-in-a-lifetime experiences i've had. The USA is truly magnificent."
"My year abroad in Washington was definitely the best year of my life so far. Not only did I meet people who I will be friends with for a lifetime I learned so many things about myself I never knew before. I was able to do so much traveling and got to see more places in America than most Americans will ever see! My biggest advice is to take the risk and just GO! Don't worry about all the details! Everything will fall into place! You will NEVER regret this experience! "
"Spending a month immersed in another culture was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I spent a lot of my time volunteering in a hospital – a place where I was not only able to use my skills and knowledge, but also where I was afforded the great privilege of connecting with people from another culture on such a human level. It was so special. I also had the opportunity to spend a few days at an orphanage, and was reminded of the beauty in life by these gorgeous smiling faces. Living within a community is so much more valuable than visiting that same place. I will look back on my time in Africa as one of the most significant in my life, and with iLead, there is no excuse to not embrace the same sort of experience!"
"Everytime I watch this video it makes me smile. Going on exchange was the best decision I have ever made. It was the best year of my life! I have tasted freedom, experienced so many different cultures and made friends for life all over the world. I've come home with the dreaded travel bug, but this has made me even more excited to see the world and gain further life experiences living overseas. I hope this video inspires everyone to take the plunge and study abroad! Don't delay putting in that application. If you've got the drive to immerse yourself in another culture and see Europe, America, Africa or anywhere in the world - start planning for the trip of a lifetime! I may have no money left in the bank, but I have a head full of memories - and that in itself is priceless"
"I can honestly say that my experience studying for one semester in the USA was the most challenging and rewarding experience of my life. I got to fully immerse myself in another culture, experience typical American college life, travel extensively across the country and meet the most amazing lifelong friends. I increased my confidence, gained independence, became more understanding of different cultures and lifestyles and learnt to love experiencing new things. My advice for anyone even considering going on exchange, is just go for it! It may seem daunting, but I promise you will have the best time of your life! A huge thank-you to the University of Newcastle and the iLead Program for making this possible!"
"This is a little insight into my time in the States as part of a Semester Abroad in Flagstaff, Arizona. Everything about this experience was top notch and I urge anyone with the opportunity: Make it happen. Shout out to the ILEAD and the Study Abroad programs at the Uni of Newcastle. Enjoy!"
"There were so many things I loved about my experience at HKBU. Student life was incredibly enriching and fun because its tight community of local students and other exchange students. Hong Kong is such a vibrant city with lots of different things to experience and access like the bustling market streets in the centre of Kowloon and the night life on Hong Kong island to the fishing villages on the islands as well as countless bush walking tracks to hike outside the city. As for food, there are endless options for different cuisines and flavours to explore."
"My advice is to go away on exchange for as long as you can and travel as much as you can. There is not one day that passes when I don't think about my experiences, the places I've seen and the new people I've met. I loved being an Australian and traveling as everyone really respects you and I loved experiencing the culture; especially when all these amazing countries were either a bus ride or a short flight away. I think attending a different university expands your knowledge and appreciation so much. It was so special for me to meet people from different countries as I know I will stay in contact with them. My simple advice is... just do it!!"
The University of Newcastle accepts no responsibility for the information provided in the student testimonials accessed through this webpage.