Aussie on Campus

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Good News, Everyone!

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Newsletter subscribers and Facebook fans will already know the big news, but it’s time I shared it here as well:

Aussie on the Road is taking a break from being ‘on the road’ and changing things up a little bit by returning to university to study Tourism Management. That’s right: I’ll be a student for the first time in a long time.

Coupled with my recent decision to join the Shadows of Africa team as their Australia & New Zealand representative, 2015 is a year of new directions that I hope will ensure I can be on the road for the rest of my life.

It’s a short term pause to gather my breath (so to speak) before I take another running leap out into the big, bad world farther down the line.

You’re No Longer on the Road?

It’s true that 2015 will see me settled in Australia for the time being, but that certainly doesn’t mean I don’t intend to be on the road as often as possible. Whenever my study schedule allows, I’ll be doing my best to get out and see more of my own backyard.

One of the earliest posts on my site was about how detours can be fun, and I see this as a brief detour from my globe-trotting ways so that I can be better equipped to travel for years to come.

My work with Shadows of Africa as well as the education I’ll be receiving in tourism management are going to put me in a better position to work in the field I love, and that’s worth the temporary ‘discomfort’ of living in a cruisy beach city and studying something I’m interested in.

Tough life, eh?

Exploring More of Australia

Throughout the year I’ll be aiming to explore both the Coffs Harbour region and greater Australia, taking advantage of student holidays and flight sales to get to places in Australia I’m somewhat embarrassed to say I haven’t made it to yet.

I’ll make the effort to get down to Melbourne and visit my sister and her family, I’ll try and make jaunts to places like Darwin, Perth, Adelaide, and Brisbane to catch up with friends I’m long overdue for catch-ups with. I’ll spend more time visiting both my family in Ben Lomond and my dear friends who call Sydney and Canberra home.

I’ll aim to get to more regional festivals and events such as the Australian Celtic Festival, Coast Out, and the Coffs Harbour Buskers Festival; as well as hopefully getting back to Broke Fordwich for their Little Bit of Italy in Broke Festival in April.

Wine and chocolate tasting
I’m really keen to get back to Broke to catch up with old friends (and I’m not talking about the wine).

Getting Abroad

Being a student isn’t going to mean a complete stop to my jet-setting, either. Perhaps the most exciting part of my ongoing relationship with Shadows of Africa is going to be being a part of their yearly media tour. Last year’s tour saw me on safari in Tanzania, and this year’s is likely to include Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya as well!

My degree also offers two separate opportunities to head abroad – with a six month exchange giving me the opportunity to experience student life in the United States, Austria, or The Netherlands; as well as a six month internship letting my choose my own destiny and working with a company either at home or abroad.

Plenty of opportunities to christen that new passport I need to order.

Student Life

Another facet of this year’s new direction I’m really excited about is a return to student life. Pre-travel CWB was a bit too shy to take full advantage of the social opportunities that life on campus afforded him, and so I’m aiming to make up for lost time by living on campus and being as involved as I can be.

After running pub crawls in China, I’m excited to get involved and continue to indulge my inner Peter Pan by embracing the boozy, fun culture that is part and parcel of the university experience.

Earlier that evening, somebody had set fire to my beard. I shit you not.
Earlier that evening, somebody had set fire to my beard. I shit you not.

I’ll confess to being a tad daunted about the prospect of being slightly older than many of my fellow students, but I’ve yet to meet a man who can out-chug me.

(Although one Canadian woman did put me to shame…)

It’s an exciting new chapter not only from an academic and (hopefully) career perspective, but from a social one as well. Might be time to check off some of those life experience bucket list items.

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It’s an interesting and slightly unexpected change of direction for me – a guy who has never been at his most comfortable calling Australia home. As you’ll see from my upcoming post about the 10 Reasons I Love Living in Australia, it’s certainly not all doom and gloom.

I’m excited to further my education and do so in a field that I am genuinely passionate about. I’m thrilled to be able to spend more time with my brothers, my sister and her kids, and my parents. I’m stoked I’ll get more time to renew old friendships with dear friends, and do so from a part of the country that was once declared the most livable city in Australia.

Now to dust off my toga and practice keg-stands…

Looking to head back to school, but maybe don’t have the time or desire to embrace the campus experience like I am?

Check out Open Universites

Your Say

What are you excited for in 2015? Do you have any new adventures you’re preparing to embark on?

 

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5 comments

  1. Congrats & goodluck! If you’re ever in Adelaide look me up.. Ill show you round the tiny bit of it ive got to know in the last few months!

  2. Don’t forget you’ll also hopefully get to experience the Woolgoolga Curry Festival and the Sawtell Chilli Festival 🙂

      • Yes and you should spend a day in Bellingen when the markets are on and take a drive up the Thora valley. It’s such an amazing area! I grew up in Bellingen and Woolgoolga! 🙂

        • Definitely keen to spend some time up in Bellingen. We drove through today and it’s such a cute town.

          I’d better get my license if I plan to do any scenic drives >_>

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