Global Learning blog

26184072_1380177345425789_7490395536562847744_nChiqui Manalastas graduated from the University of Adelaide in 2017 with a Bachelor of Nursing. Chiqui took part in our Nusing Japan study tour while at the University of Adelaide, which lead her to focus on a more globally-focused career, starting with the Walt Disney Company Australia and New Zealand Cultural Exchange Program.

Chiqui comes from a diverse background, being born in the Philippines to Filipino parents, being raised in Japan for ten years, and then growing up in Australia for twelve years. She had previously travelled many times before she took part in the Nursing Japan study tour, travelling to Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Hawaii, and the Philippines.

The Nursing Japan study tour took place in Hyogo, Japan, during the University of Adelaide’s summer school in 2016. Chiqui was driven to apply for this program as she wanted to visit Japan again after growing up there. She was also interested in seeing what Japanese healthcare was like.

One of the highlights of the study tour for Chiqui was the opportunity to stay with a host family. She was allocated a kind and caring family who took her on a road trip to visit a town famous for hot springs, as well as to a strawberry picking farm, and many other locations. Another highlight of Chiqui’s program was visiting Universal Studios in Osaka and Tokyo Disneyland. She was also able to shadow a nurse in a Japanese hospital in
three different wards of her choice, which gave her the opportunity to hold a
newborn baby while in the maternity ward of the hospital.

4While on the study tour, Chiqui realised that she had room to improve on her conversational Japanese skills, particularly when speaking the language in a professional environment. She was able to practice translating, and also to practice her leadership skills, as she was nominated as the team leader for the duration of the study tour. Chiqui also tells us that her study tour also strengthened her love for Japan and her desire to travel, not only to other parts of Japan, but all over the world.




8After completing the study tour, Chiqui realised that she wanted to pursue a career more internationally focused, and completed an internship with the Walt Disney Company as part of their Australia and New Zealand Cultural Exchange Program. This allowed her to work with a team of different nationalities, and also gave her the opportunity to promote her bilingual skills in Japanese and English, as well as demonstrate her leadership abilities that she gained from being the leader of her study tour. During this internship, Chiqui was a Food and Beverage Hostess around three different locations at Walt Disney World. Interns are usually placed in one or two locations – Chiqui was lucky to be able to work in three. Her locations were:

  • The Plaza Ice Cream Parlour in Magic Kingdom
  • Pinocchio Village Haus in Magic Kingdom
  • Food and Wine Festival at the neighbouring EPCOT theme park


2Chiqui has always wanted to work at Disney, and found that the internship was the perfect opportunity for her. After her study tour, she realised she had a passion for travel and considered alternative career choices that would still allow her to communicate with and care for people of different backgrounds. Since graduating from the University of Adelaide, she is now pursuing a career as a flight attendant, pushing herself to step out of her comfort zone.
In the next six months, Chiqui hopes to land a cabin crew position with one of the most world-renowned airlines. She would like to return to Japan again and visit relatives, as well as her host family and friends she made on her study tour. She would also like to travel to Europe, as it is one location she hasn’t yet explored.




Chiqui believes that every experience you undertake in life shapes you as a person. While she hasn’t continued to pursue her career in nursing, Chiqui’s study tour made her realise that she wanted a future in the international field where she could interact with different cultures and put her language skills to good use. She believes that the study tour helped her to get to where she is now and that it was not only an academic learning experience, but a lesson in life as well.


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Emma Dangerfield completed an exchange to Kansai University, Japan, in Semester 2, 2017. 

IMG_40681. Karaoke – The best fun in groups or pairs, and a great way to bond with new friends. Songs in both Japanese and English are available! Good chance to impress people with your rap or opera skills or as an excuse to scream along with everyone else.

2. Nomihoudai – Popular with Japanese students, Nomihoudai are all-you-can-drink parties. You pay around $20 for a couple of hours and can have as many drinks as you like. Another great bonding activity to do with new friends.

3. Road trip – Rent a car (or use a friends) with a group, pick an area, and spend the weekend driving and exploring Japan!
*note: you need to have someone with an international or
Japanese drivers license.

IMG_34824. Clubs – A great way to make fast friends and improve your Japanese is to join a club or circle at the university. You’ll pick up the local slang super quick and have an in with the recent news.

5. Live native – Don’t just stick with your friends, reach out and meet some Japanese people. They are some of the friendliest, nicest and most generous people in the world (no exaggeration needed). They will gladly guide you around town, especially if you’ve just moved there and have no idea where to go.

6. Dormlife – Live it up in a student dormitory! You’ll get to meet new people from all over the world and learn so much about other cultures, especially if they can cook. Most dormitories generally have monthly activities you can participate in to bond with your fellow dorm-mates.

7. Mario Kart – Yes, you’re a resident in Japan, but it’s always good to be a tourist sometimes. Mario-karting through the streets of Tokyo or Osaka is definitely a must while you’re on exchange.

IMG_40838. Travel – While you’re in the area, why don’t you check out some of the neighbouring countries? For example; South Korea and China are only an hour plane ride away. Thailand, Taiwan, and Vietnam are also well within reach.

9. Food – Rule number one: Don’t question what you eat. Trust me, it gives you a better experience and helps you become more open to try as much as you can. $1 sushi places are great, and all-you-can-eats are super popular and worth your money. For example: Yakiniku (DIY BBQ) and Sweets Paradise (pretty much what the name says) are excellent experiences to try.

10. Have FUN! – Yes, you’re in Japan to study, but you’re also in a whole other country. Make the most of it and live it up!

Emma has offered to provide travel advice to any students accepted on programs to Japan. If you would like to get in touch with Emma, please send us an email at

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katie portraitKatie Bezzoubov graduated from the University of Adelaide in 2016 with a Bachelor of Health Sciences, specialising in Health Promotion and Indigenous Health. Katie completed two overseas programs during her time at The University of Adelaide and currently works as a Project Support Officer for Disability SA.

Katie told us she had previously travelled to Bali and her home country, Russia, but had never been away from home for a long period independently. Katie reflected on the highlights of her programs, stating that her favourite parts of her Mexico trip were visiting the Pyramid of the Sun and old Aztec pyramids. She also recalls visiting an AIDS clinic, which she said opened her eyes to how people in developing areas were struggling. She noted the conflicting contexts between culture and health, telling us the quality of the AIDS clinic was high and provided incredible support. In regards to her program in China, Katie reflected on visiting the Great Wall of China and going to karaoke with students from Shandong University. She also detailed her visit to the Centre of Disease Control in Beijing. She felt extremely lucky to have visited the Centre, as it is considered quite a prestigious privilege to visit in the US. The Centre manages a variety of epidemics and outbreaks, and is seen as an advanced facility by those in the health industry around the world.

Pyramid of the Sun, Teotihuacan

Pyramid of the Sun, Teotihuacan

We asked Katie about what she had learnt about herself while overseas. She told us, “I used to think that you’re not really an expert at anything in first year, then going into second year you realise that even though you’ve studied so much, you would struggle to answer a more advanced question regarding your study area. When I was overseas, I realised that I did actually have skills, and that I had learnt how to think critically. I used my knowledge to compare and contrast, and realised just how much I had learnt.” Katie felt that this made her more employable. She stopped asking yes or no questions, and instead began asking when, where, how, and why.

When Katie returned from her study tour to China, she realised that the quality of her work had improved. She was taking a more holistic approach to her assignments, and felt that this is what helped her land an internship with the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI). When she completed this internship, she was more motivated to apply for graduate programs. This time, not only was she searching for jobs, but she was searching and realising that she was qualified and had the skills and knowledge to apply for some that she perhaps hadn’t considered before.



Homestay Accommodation, Mexico City

Homestay Accommodation, Mexico City

Katie felt that her overseas programs gave her a definite advantage in searching for employment. She explained “When you finish university and start searching for a job, everyone has a Bachelor’s degree. You’re all at the same level. Compared to those who perhaps didn’t have overseas study on their records, I definitely felt that I stood out a little more by including those experiences on my resume.” She found that in her job interviews, she was asked directly about her overseas experiences before she could slip them in to her standard responses. Professionally, she felt that she was able to show that she could apply her knowledge in a practical setting. She also found that those interviewing her had not had those same opportunities, and were extremely pleased that students were being offered these overseas programs.

Katie believes that in her professional environment (working in the public sector), having experience working with vulnerable people who are culturally and linguistically diverse provided her with the skills to speak about how she could apply her experiences to a new working environment. Since graduating from the University of Adelaide, Katie started working in Housing SA in the Department of Community and Social Inclusion. She was assisting with project work regarding support for people in terms of housing and homelessness. Katie then secured a position with Disability SA as a Project Support Officer, assisting with some of the changes to the National Disability and Insurance Scheme. On the day we conducted this interview, Katie revealed to us that she had just received a promotion – congratulations Katie!

Great Wall of China, Beijing

Great Wall of China, Beijing

When she first began university, Katie did not know what she wanted to do with her career. She knew that she enjoyed health promotion, but also studied areas such as anthropology, ethics, and gender studies. Her overseas programs allowed her to study in different cultures and to see things from a different perspective by working in developing areas of Mexico and China with a diverse group of people, in some cases quite vulnerable people.

In the next six months, Katie is considering looking into further studies in Public Policy and Management. She believes in striving for change and hopes to one day be in a position where she can make positive change for those who need it. She also has plans to visit Europe with her partner, particularly Austria.

Katie’s overseas experiences showed her that taking part in an overseas program triggered a chain reaction of opportunities for her. As she told us, “I studied overseas, realised that I have skills, and a broader vision of public health and how the world works. I then started to do better in my assignments, and secured an internship as a result. I talked about the internship in my job interview and got the job. And now I’ve gotten a promotion. It’s a domino effect! Not immediate, of course, but my experiences definitely helped pave the way to get where I am now.”


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Grace Cunningham studied part of her Bachelor of International Studies at Simpson College in Semester 1, 2017.  Where Even Is Iowa?  Those were my exact words when I found out I had been placed at Simpson College for my semester exchange. I will be honest; Simpson College was not my first choice, but I had […]

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Hilary D’Angelo attended the University of Oslo in Semester 2, 2017 as part of her double degree in Media and Law.  There is nothing quite like the Norwegian sky in early winter. It’s the palest blue, completely cloudless, and almost blinding amidst the freezing weather and blankets of ice and snow beneath. Calm, captivating, beautiful, […]

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Ryan Cunningham completed several Global Learning program while at the University of Adelaide. In Semester 1 of 2014, he attended a Confucius Institute Semester Program; in Semester 2 of 2014, he completed an exchange to Tsinghua University; for the full year of 2016, he attended the University of Hong Kong on exchange, and during the […]

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Dechlan completed the German in Germany Study Tour in Summer School, 2017, before starting his exchange at the Technical University of Munich for a Full Calendar Year in 2017. The following blog post is an excerpt from Dechlan’s blog, Dechlan and Deutschland.    I arrived in Germany on the 4th of January and spent the […]

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The GLO Alumni Series focuses on past students who have completed overseas study as part of their degree, and how these experiences have helped them in their future after university.  Ben Hauser completed a Bachelor of Media at the University of Adelaide in 2016. In 2015, he took part in the Japanese Media Industries and […]

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Rebecca Batelaan studied at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile for a Full Calendar Year in 2016. When I decided to go to Chile, I only knew I wanted to go to a South American country to practice Spanish and learn about Latin American culture. Now, I know I’ve learnt much more than that, including independence […]

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Our student Rebecca Slimming sent us this beautiful e-postcard all the way from Zurich, Switzerland. Her rave report of her exchange at the University of Zurich so far had everyone in the Global Learning office beaming. We’re always thrilled to hear from students who are having a wonderful time abroad! Dear Global Learning Team, Thank […]

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