Four months ago I was nervous to leave for Australia; unsure of what to expect in this place that was unknown to me, halfway across the world, where I didn’t know a single person. Since then I’ve seen koalas, kangaroos, and platypus, traveled to Sydney, the Great Barrier Reef, and the Outback, and made amazing friends from all across the world. More importantly, the experiences I’ve had –– from intimidating solo trips in Thailand to figuring out how to set up a foreign bank account –– have allowed me to mature as a person, and have helped me figure out who I am and what my goals in life are.
Now I must leave, and I’m just as nervous going back because these have been the best four months of my life. Thank you Southern Cross for making Australia a second home to me!
-- Jackson Royster, Appalachian State University, 2017