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The basics
Australia: Student Life

What's it like being an international student in Adelaide?

From the food to sandboarding, Jayee and Vinh tell us all about being international students in Australia.

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We spoke to second year students Vinh Dang from Vietnam and Jayee Teh from Malaysia to find out all about their experiences studying Down Under at the University of Adelaide! Vinh is studying a Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical & Pharmaceutical Engineering) and Jayee is studying a Bachelor of Psychological Science


Read on to find out about everything from their thoughts on Australian food and the local residents, to what they plan to do after graduating from Adelaide...


Why did you choose Adelaide and the University of Adelaide? 

Jayee: At the beginning I was deciding between Adelaide and Melbourne. I chose Adelaide because it seemed to be the perfect fit for me to live and study here. Adelaide is quieter compared to the big bustling cities and living costs are cheaper. I chose the University of Adelaide as I felt it was one of the best universities. 


Vinh: I also chose Adelaide for the quiet compared to busy cities, where I’m from its always busy so it’s nice to have some quiet. Being able to study at one of the best unis in Australia is why I chose the University of Adelaide.


What were you most fearful and excited about on your way to Australia?

Vinh: I was most excited to explore the land down under! I was also looking forward to experiencing the Australian culture.


Jayee: I was excited to see all the animals which I had always heard about!


Jayee trying her hand at sandboarding on Kangaroo Island

What do you like most about living in Adelaide?

Jayee: I love the people. Australians are very friendly and helpful. The environment and culture is great, and I feel really comfortable living and studying here. People will help if you ask and are very approachable.


Vinh: I like that it’s one of the greenest places in Australia, compared to say the Northern Territory. It is situated perfectly, with good beaches and the best places to go hiking all nearby. 


How would you describe a typical Australian, to someone who has never met one? 

Jayee: Very friendly, they’ll ask you “how are ya?” as a greeting – I had never heard that before coming here so for a while I didn’t know how to respond.


Vinh: Super laid back, very approachable, super chill, friendly, easier to start a conversation with than most other cultures.  


What have you enjoyed most about the University of Adelaide?

Jayee: The social events, and volunteering opportunities for international students. We can come together and share ideas and learn from each other. I like that the uni is suited to your needs. 


Vinh: This uni isn’t as large as other unis but the socialising is great, between both students and staff, everyone is very friendly and co-operative.


Both Jayee and Vinh plan to stay in Australia and find a job after graduating


Do you think you’ll come back to Australia after your study is over?

Jayee: I’d prefer to stay and live here if I can get a job, so I can keep spending time with friends and continuing my life here.


Vinh: The job market here is competitive for my degree. If I’m good enough and can get a job here I’ll stay, or I’ll move somewhere similar in Australia.


Have you found any differences or similarities between Australia and your home country?

Vinh: There are lots of Vietnamese communities here, it’s a mix between Vietnamese and Aussie culture which is good to see.


Jayee: The big difference for me is in food – Malaysian food is spicy compared to ‘Aussie’ food like fish and chips. 


Interested in studying at the University of Adelaide? Check out the courses available here and search for other Australian universities here!

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