The Beginning of My Exchange – by Samantha Field

Hello readers!

Usually our student blogs are full of excitement, fun, and (rightfully deserved) bragging… but we’ve had one that’s a little different. Here we see a reality that some exchange students face… from Samantha who’s been at McMaster University in Canada.

“The first part of my exchange has been, in a word, frustrating. I have unfortunately encountered problems upon every step in the initial process of exchange and it’s made me a bit disheartened. Upon initially deciding upon McMaster as my university it took several meetings with my departments coordinator to decide upon which classes I would need to take in order to get credit at Adelaide only to have McMaster change the classes available only a few weeks before I left for  a holiday to America before entering Canada.  Also due to some miscommunication I had to rush in order to get all the appropriate forms to global learning in time to have them mail my application off…”

We just want to say to our exchange students who might be in their first semester overseas… hang in there! Logistics can be tricky, courses can change, but you’re still our student and the Global Learning Office and your faculty office are still here for you if you need us.

Also, we recommend you check out our Counselling Service’s UniThrive website – it contains some great tips on ways to alleviate stress, and is accessible anywhere:

Samantha still has a great outlook, though:

“This trip, while somewhat disappointing, has not been all bad though. I have enjoyed spending time in Canada and seeing the ways things are both similar and different. The couple from which I am renting a room have been incredibly welcoming and I’ve enjoyed seeing the leaves change colour. As my dad also lives here I have had the luck of being able to travel a lot too, including two trips to Toronto to see the Bluejays play baseball, a weekend trip to Cedar Point theme park in Ohio and numerous days down by Niagara Falls. While I haven’t had quite the experience I was hoping for, it has reinspired my love for travel and it’s been nice to spend time with my dad and new step family. I certainly don’t think it’s been a bad decision to do this exchange as it’s taught me how to be more independent.”

Thanks for sharing your experience with us, Samantha… and good luck everyone out there!

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