Being an international student comes with its own set of challenges, but these experiences are an integral part of life and an opportunity for growth and learning. Embracing these challenges and persevering through them is what makes the journey as an international student all the more rewarding.
Hi, my name is Harsh Nathani, and I am an international student hailing from the vibrant city of Muzaffarpur in Bihar, India. Currently, I am pursuing my Master's in Economics at the University of Melbourne, Australia. Through this article, I want to shed light on the three major challenges that international students commonly face upon arriving here. By addressing these obstacles head-on, you can better prepare and equip yourself to navigate our new environment with confidence and ease.
Brush up on your academic skills
As a postgraduate student at the University of Melbourne, I faced several challenges that made my academic journey more difficult than I had anticipated. Despite being a medalist in my undergraduate degree, I struggled during the first few weeks of class to adjust to the rigorous coursework.
The material was incredibly dense, and the professors had high expectations for assignments and exams. But over time, I began to adapt and learn and so would you. The University provides excellent resources to support its students, and the faculty members are always willing to help if you take the initiative and reach out to them. So, brace yourself for some tough grind.
Managing your finances
The next thing to keep in mind is managing your finances. As an Indian student in a foreign land, you may have to juggle a part-time job, pay taxes, and handle personal or educational expenses. It may seem overwhelming at first, but don't worry, it's doable. Just give yourself some time to adjust to this new lifestyle and you'll be sorted.
One piece of advice would be to focus on settling yourself first before you start looking for jobs. I've seen people who immediately start hunting for jobs as soon as they arrive and end up neglecting their health and academics. There are plenty of job opportunities available with attractive pay rates, supportive management, and flexible work hours. So, take some time to adjust to the new environment and establish a routine before you start searching for employment. It'll save you from unnecessary stress and help you to perform better in the long run.
Melbourne is a city that never rests - There are so many events and activities to choose from that you'll never run out of things to do. You can dance to Bollywood tunes one night, binge-watch Korean dramas the next, go for a museum tour, or attend a classical music concert - it's all here.
Melbourne is a haven for sports lovers too. As Australia's sporting capital, the city offers an abundance of activities to satisfy your sporting spirit. So, get ready to immerse yourself in the wonders of this incredible place.
Now, let's talk about food
Being an Indian, I know how much we love our Tadkas and Masalas. Melbourne's food scene may be a bit bland for our taste buds, but it's culturally diverse.
With hundreds of Indian restaurants scattered throughout the city, you're sure to find a place that hits the spot. And don't worry about missing out on ingredients - there are plenty of stores that carry all the Indian groceries you need. However, to truly master the art of Indian cooking, some culinary skills are highly recommended.
To conclude, I know studying abroad may be a big leap, but the experience is worth it. The academic rigor and diverse cultural experiences are unparalleled, and the skills and knowledge gained during this time will last a lifetime. Remember to focus on academics, manage your finances wisely, and take time to explore and enjoy your new surroundings. With these tips in mind, you'll be well on your way to a successful and enriching international student experience.
The author is pursuing a Masters of Economics from University of Melbourne.