Griffith University – Gold Coast Review (18)

Griffith University – Gold Coast Review (18)

Why Australia?

Right from the start of my studies it was very certain that I wanted to do a semester abroad. On my list were Australia and America. I finally decided on Australia because my gut feeling told me that Australia would be the best choice and it was.

1. Organization

My semester in Australia on the Gold Coast started in mid-February and ended in late June 2016. I started organizing at the beginning of October last year.

The first thing I did was get in touch with MicroEDU and roughly get some information about the universities in Australia. The nice staff at MicroEDU then sent me a list of colleges that would best fit my degree. I then chose Griffith University on the Gold Coast because I liked it the most. The reasons were mostly the positive reviews and the proximity to the beach. Then I took the necessary language test at my university in Bielefeld. I took the “DAAD” language test which was free and very relaxed. I passed the test with a small “b” in all areas. This corresponds to language level B2-C1.

After I received all the necessary documents from MicroEDU for the application and sent them completed to MicroEDU in Münster, I only had to wait for my acceptance, which did not take long. Then I applied online for the student visa and got an acceptance within 24 hours. After all that happened, I booked my flight and waited eagerly for my semester abroad.

2. Apartment

Apartments on the Gold Coast can be found through gumtree or flatemates. Most international students lived in Surfers Paradise, Main Beach, or Southport. I arrived a week before O-Week and went looking for it. At first I lived in the hostel “Budds” in Surfers Paradise.

When I was looking for an apartment, I only had the right to have a single room and not a high rent per week. I also wanted to live in surfers. After five days, I found that finding a place to live is not as easy as explained in the reports. I personally walked to the high-rise buildings in Surfers, which wasn’t promising either. After about 8 apartment visits, I decided to live at the Campus Village because I didn’t want to put the stress of looking for an apartment to myself anymore. The apartments were either too expensive or in poor condition.

The Campus Village is a five-minute walk from the university. At Campus Village, I took over the last 4 months of an annual contract from a student. I had to pay $ 230 a week. This rent is relatively cheap for the Campus Village. If you book an apartment from home, you pay $ 275 a week, which I think is a bit high. In addition, the contracts start in early February / July and end at the end of June / November. So for the weeks that you are not there, you still pay. After about 4 weeks I moved out of the Campus Village because it was too expensive for me. Before that I had to find someone to take over my contract. Amazingly, I was really lucky and quickly found someone. I then lived in Southport for $ 170. I found the apartment very quickly through friends. From Southport I always took the bus to the university for about 6 minutes.

In summary, I can say: Finding a suitable apartment in Surfers is not quick and can be expensive, depending on where you want to live and what your needs are. In my opinion, the women didn’t have that much stress looking for a place to live. In some cases, a large number of apartments were advertised only for women. But you should call them anyway, sometimes it works anyway. Living at the Campus Village is really cool, you are only surrounded by international students, which is very good for your own English skills. At the Campus Village there are also a lot of activities such as free dinner, pool party and more. If you don’t live in the Campus Village, most of life takes place in surfers. I liked both apartments, although the price at Campus Village was a big disadvantage.

What would I do differently next time? It’s not that easy to sign a contract at the Campus Village, if you’re unlucky you won’t find anyone to take over the contract. I would wait until O-Week, get together with students and rent an entire apartment in a holiday home such as the Genesis, Penthouse, Solaire Apartments or Trilogy Surfers Paradise. In any case, you shouldn’t drive yourself crazy about your apartment in Germany. You will definitely find a suitable apartment. For some it is faster, for others it takes a while. Once you’ve found the right apartment, everything works.

3. Study

Griffith University on the Gold Coast is very big and quite beautiful. It’s pretty green everywhere, so you can relax outside in the shade to do work for the university. Of course you can do that in the library too. The individual faculties of Griffith Uni are spread over a large area. If you download the Griffith app beforehand, you can easily find every single room.

If you live in Surfers, you can take the tram to the university in around 25 minutes. In addition, the bus network is quite good and you can get almost anywhere. For buses and trains you need a GoCard, which you can buy at the university or in any “Seven Eleven”. In addition, students receive a discount on every trip. In order to be able to use this, however, one must first apply online for “concession fares”, which only takes a few minutes.

a. Orientation Week

On the first day, all international students meet in the main lecture hall and receive basic information there and play a few little games. Then there is a welcome BBQ and you can talk to international students. I found the program very cool and fun. In addition, get-to-know meetings, games and much more are organized throughout the week. The university goes to great lengths to ensure that the foreign students feel comfortable at the beginning. There are also events in the semester that are quite fun. I’ve visited a few and thought they were cool. In the first week there is also a market for sports courses and various other promotions. There you can register for a diving license (open water, $ 250), register for club VIP cards in Surfers Paradise and get to know nice people. I took the diving course, more on that later.

I was also on the orientation trip in Byron Bay. It was definitely worth it. It’s the best way to make friends, pet kangaroos, and get on a surfboard for the first time. I can only recommend it because the friendships that are built up there usually last until the end of the semester.

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