Sophia’s Study Abroad Experience

Studying abroad with IFSA’s Griffith University Gold Coast Internship Program has been life changing. We’re housed in a beautiful apartment on the beach. We have a gym and a pool and can walk right out the front door and be on the beach. We’re also walking distance from everything to do in Surfer’s Paradise: including shops, restaurants, night life, a great beach path for walks and runs, and the tram that can take you all over the area, including to the bus that can take you all over Queensland.

The internship program has been one of my favorite parts of my study abroad experience. I work for the Migrant Centre and I’m able to take a quick tram ride to work where I get to help, work with, and learn from a diverse group of people. I work as a Graphic Design intern there, so I have also gained lots of work experience before I graduate this year.

IFSA has also set up many wonderful programs for us. During orientation, they took us to daily lunches and dinners and gave us tours of the school and all over our area – even showing us how to use the tram and where to grocery shop. They also took us on a boat cruise to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary where we got to hold koalas and feed kangaroos and to Noosa and Brisbane for a weekend where we got to explore the city, the everglades, rain forests, beaches, and waterfalls.

A lot of people were ser on travelling to Europe because it is so easy to travel around the countries while you’re there. I’ve found that I’ve travelled so much within Australia. Outside of the trips to Noosa and Brisbane with IFSA, my roommates (also IFSA students) and I have traveled to Sydney, Melbourne, The Great Barrier Reef, New Zealand and Bali. It’s been amazing to be on this side of the world and be close to so many cool places to travel that would’ve been such a long and expensive trip from the United States.

Speaking of my roommates, that has been that greatest gift from IFSA. I didn’t know anyone coming into the program, but IFSA paired me with three random roommates, and we instantly became the best of friends and have done everything together for months. All in all, 10/10 recommend this program for anyone!

Sophia Copeland is a student who studied abroad with IFSA’s Griffith University Gold Coast Internship Program, Australia in Spring 2023.