In summary

  • Josh is studying a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Professional) Biomedical Major
  • He found lockdown was a great opportunity for self-reflection and personal growth
  • He says studying abroad is out of this world, having swapped a cold Melbourne winter for balmy Borneo at Swinburne Sarawak

Get me back on campus!

I was excited to step foot back on campus, seeing so many young faces gave me this overwhelming sense to finish my degree but also feelings of happiness that the campus was alive again. I was lucky enough that my degree did allow me to come on to university campus very briefly in 2021; however, it was mainly very empty and lifeless. The thought of a full library and in person classes again was something I had missed.

My lockdown learning

lockdown was a struggle for me. Not seeing friends, not socialising, the works, it all played its part. Some of the highs were more about having to get used to hanging around myself more and discovering new hobbies and interests that I otherwise wouldn’t have. After the purchase of my ninth camera, it was safe to say I found a pretty fun (but expensive!) way to pass time.

Josh enjoyed immersing himself in new cultures while studying aboard in Borneo.

Swinburne IRL is SRSLY OMG because…

I got to study engineering management abroad in the Malaysian campus Swinburne has based in Borneo. Swapping out the Australian winter to travel and study in South East Asia proved to be my favourite experience of my tertiary education.  

I was pulling all-nighters just so I could go straight from class on Thursday to the airport to explore Malaysia. The cultural difference in the educational system was an experience that forced me to develop good adaptability and planning skills on the fly.

My hybrid learning highlights are...

Lockdown focused a lot of my attention inward and allowed for some forced self- development. I found myself constantly asking the bigger questions regarding overall purpose and meaning and found myself reading countless philosophy books. I was able to better understand the topics I had always wondered about but never decided to commit myself to solving. Fortunately, these ideas and thoughts bled into my everyday life, and I found myself really becoming aware of who I was and the person I wanted to be. The overall experience has not led to large changes, yet the affirmations of the person I want to become, a person who leaves behind a better community than what I was brought into.

Josh and his friends soaking up the sun while studying aboard.

Friendships (and colleagues) for life

Meeting so many people across degrees in very collaborative units has given me lifelong friends. 

As I finish off my degree, I have friends who are still in Swinburne, working in industry whilst they finish their degree like myself, or working full time in industry. Seeing these people from my first-year physics class turn into job ready networking partners has been an interesting and rewarding thing to watch. 

This year is for me!  

For the first time in years, my goals have been more focused inwards on development rather than academic success. The numerous lockdowns forced some solitary thinking, and I decided to try and mould myself into someone I want to be around. For me, that looked like partaking in more physical activity, delving into a hobby and socialising. I wanted to become ‘a useful adult’ so I even learned some maintenance and repair skills. I have smaller goals within these categories, but they’re all focused on trying to make me a better person.

After ensuring he got a bit of everything out of his degree, Josh is feeling empowered and ready to take on life after uni, after he graduates of course!

World, Meet Josh

It sounds boring, but I really am looking forward to finishing my degree! Being able to take on the world is an exciting concept (after an overseas holiday of course). As the world reopens, transitioning into the next stage of my life seems more exciting than ever.

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