Student Sarah Cinquemani talks about her journey to Australia on her study abroad trip.

Australia Study Abroad Turtle

Environmental Research in Australia

By Sarah Cinquemani

Just four days after coming home from Adelphi last spring, I was boarding a plane to Australia for an amazing, three week research-based study abroad program. It was fantastic being able to travel with a handful of students who were as passionate about the environment as I am. Between traveling up and down the Gold Coast from Brisbane to Cairns to Crocodylus and the Tablelands to finally ending the journey in Sydney, I was able to experience many aspects of Australian life. We spent ten days on an island in the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Gladstone on the Tropic of Capricorn named Heron Island after the large population of heron that nested there throughout the year. I was amazed by the freedom granted to develop a research question, collect empirical data, run statistical analysis and present the information all within a week’s span.

Aside from being a researcher, I was also a tourist, a beach bum, a snorkeler, a food critic, and an explorer. Traveling to Australia didn’t require a lot of adjustment, aside from the 14 hour time difference. They spoke English, I could convert Australian dollars to US in my head, and they have an extreme love for bacon. Life down under provided a new perspective on a culture that has so much in common with America. Learning about the aboriginal culture and the discrimination that takes place in an apparently peaceful society was something I did not expect. It was enlightening to see other nations struggle with addressing their past as well. This opportunity to study abroad has changed my experience at Adelphi and I strongly encourage all students to go out and try something new.

Fellow LGSer, Ben Nichols felt passionately about the trip as well; “There is no way to compare a picture to actually standing atop the Sydney bridge looking out at the Opera house and rest of the city, and no way to describe actually being in the middle of a rainforest. There is no other comparable tranquility to that of being on a tiny, remote island with only 20 close friends and the stars. It was a trip filled with ‘you just have to be there’, and filled with many adventures that I will likely never get to experience again.”

This piece appeared in the Levermore Global Scholars Newsletter October 2013 edition.

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