Switching Snow for Sunshine

Editors note: Our students are developing blog posts and social media content as part of the learning process for our study abroad trip in Australia. We’ll be posting them here along the journey. We have two posts to share that students prepared before our trip. The first is from Sarah Arnett, Sydney Halas and Taylor Thompson. Then we hear from Taylor Long, Yousef Alagha and Alex Nuelle.

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While many Missourians may be trudging through layers of ice and snow in early December, the UCM Public Relations Program will be soaking up the sun in the land down under.

In the first study abroad trip in UCM PR’s history, students of all majors and public relations professors will embark on a journey that includes learning through every step of the way.  Students will expand their knowledge of public relations and international travel, enjoy unique opportunities, and immerse themselves in Australian culture.

Students will engage in learning on their first tour in Brisbane while visiting the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) campus.  Over the course of two days, students will attend workshops put on by professionals.  This visit will enable students to get involved as they create and present a blog or social media post with UCM’s new tagline in mind, “Opportunity in Action.”  After the second afternoon at the QUT campus, students will speak with the Phillips Group.  Here, students will discuss case studies, listen to presentations, and receive materials that will assist them as future professionals.

Of course, this study abroad trip is not all work.  The itinerary includes one day dedicated to enjoying the Gold Coast.  The group will arrive at Surfers Paradise shortly after 11 a.m. and have the day to themselves.  Some students plan to do more than just lounge on the beach.

“I have always been interested in marine life, but I have never gotten the opportunity to experience it first hand,” said Nicole Mense, a junior marketing major.  “On the day we go to beach, I am renting a snorkel and goggles to explore the ocean.”

To wrap up the trip, the group will visit Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary.  This stop on the journey will integrate entertainment and learning.  Students will have free time to explore the sanctuary after visiting with employees to discuss how the sanctuary operates.

All the organized visits will provide learning opportunities for students, but one aspect of the trip that may provide more experience than any other is staying in the Brisbane City Youth Hostel.  The trip was strategically planned to take place during the holiday season.  This allows UCM students to interact with others from universities all around the world also on vacation.  As many students on the trip are public relations majors, it is important they learn to implement their networking skills in every possible situation.

Students and staff alike will have a busy schedule this winter break learning about international travel and public relations, partaking in excursions, and soaking up Australian culture.

Alumni, family and anyone interested in UCM PR’s first study abroad trip should follow this blog. It will be updated by students on the trip with posts including videos and pictures highlighting their group and individual adventures.  Even if the reader is at home layering up to brave the Missouri winter, they will, at least, have the opportunity to experience the land down under in spirit with UCM students and staff.

The Land Down Under

Taylor Long, Yousef Alagha and Alex Nuelle

The time has finally come. After what seems like an eternity of waiting and preparation we are finally heading to Australia, also known as “The Land Down Under”. Follow us on our journey to the great country of Australia and the beautiful city of Brisbane to see and hear about more!

Over 30 of us including students from several different majors as well as a few faculty and staff will be making the long journey to Australia from Kansas City . We have learned the slang, seen the places, and even learn some of their culture but now it’s time to finally get there and see how different this place is!

Before leaving we met several times with Dr. Hansen-Horn and talked about all the exciting things we would do while in Australia, how the time change would affect us and all the unique opportunities we would have to explore the city and surrounding areas. From workshops at QUT (Queensland University of Technology), and exploring the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary to walking around Brisbane on a warm sunny day and trying all sorts of new foods, we’ll be sure to see and do it all and post about it in our blogs.

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The city of Brisbane has so many things for us to see and do while we are there. Activities range anywhere from staying in the city touring a botanical garden to venturing outward and going on a rainforest tour in the Toohey Forest. There will surely be no shortage of activities for us to do in our free time while we are there.

As we pack our bags, with only a few short days before we embark on our trip, our anxiety is at an all-time high and our minds are full of ideas as to what life will be like while we are there.  Along with a whole new culture, a new unique group of people awaits us along with all sorts of new foods to try, sights to see and slang to learn.

We can’t wait to update our friends and families back home on such an amazing trip. Come on this journey with us and follow our blog and social media accounts!

Twitter: @UCM_PR_Program

Facebook: @ucmpr

Instagram: @ucm_pr.






About ucm_pr_program

PRSA certified program in undergraduate public relations education, with growth in graduate education
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