Global Tiger Tales Index List
Lindsey Harris, Australia: Univ. of the
Spring 2003 Internship (Self-Directed):
Australia Zoo, Spring 2003
Expedition Trips, Spring 2005
I was fortunate enough in my college career to get to study abroad twice. My first adventure took me to Australia. I was a sophomore and was just getting comfortable in my “away from home” surroundings. I suddenly felt the urge to challenge myself with a new environment once again.
I was going to summer classes and on a feeling of spontaneity stopped by the Auburn Abroad Office. The staff was extremely helpful and took into account my major, the classes I needed, and the expectations I had. Within just a few days, I had my paperwork filled out. I chose a school called The University of the Sunshine Coast nestled just north of Brisbane and 3 minutes from the beach. With a major in Zoology, I was hoping to do an internship at a zoo. As it turned out, Australia Zoo (home of The Crocodile Hunter) was just a 30 minute bus ride from my apartment in Maroochydore. I contacted the college in Australia and asked if it was possible for me to intern at the zoo through their internship program. They contacted the zoo, which said they did not accept interns. I was quite upset but not defeated. After many phone calls and letters and sending my qualifications to Australia Zoo, they finally agreed to take me on as the first intern at Australia Zoo. I was ecstatic!
I arrived in Australia a month early and traveled around the continent with my mother. It was an amazing experience that I was glad to share with my mom! Classes began and I found the Australian life laid back and awesome! Between classes, my internship, and hanging out at the beach… I found my days passed too quickly to be homesick. My study abroad experience allowed me to open doors I never thought possible! I got to work face to face with the crocodile hunter, meet life-long friends, and learn about a different culture. I found out I could do anything once I separated myself from the comforts I depended on so much back home.
When I returned home, my family was amazed at how mature I had become… not to mention how excited they were to have watched me on an episode of the Crocodile Hunter during Animal Planet’s Croc Week. My resume had beefed up and getting a job in my field became so much easier since most employers love to hire people who have had international and hands-on experiences. After this, I knew I wanted to study abroad another time!
Choosing a second program to
go on was very exciting. I looked up programs in Africa
and South America. I decided to do something
different. I found a program in Antarctica and decided
it would be great to study the wildlife there.
Unfortunately, the program ended up not being able to
take students outside their university. But I had my
hopes set on Antarctica at this point. I decided to
find a professor who would sponsor me in a trip to the
White Continent. The professor agreed to give me
research and books to read and a grade at the end of the
trip. This study abroad trip was very different from
the previous one I had done and offered new learning
experiences. I went to Antarctica for 2 weeks on an
expedition. They were the most amazing two weeks of my
life. The sites I saw consisted of more penguins than
you could ever imagine, seals lounging around like giant
boulders, whales, albatross, and icebergs larger than a
10-story building. During the expedition, I sat through
very knowledgeable lectures on conservation and
Antarctic wildlife while drinking hot tea to keep
warm. After this amazing journey, I spent a month
traveling in Argentina and Chile. I also spent a week
kayaking and camping through the Chilean fjords. This
study abroad trip confirmed to me my passion for
conservation and zoology along with my passion of
If I could tell someone the
one thing I think is most important to do during their
college life, it would be to study abroad and travel.
Nothing strengthens you as much as experiencing a new
culture and place. That spontaneous trip to the Auburn
Study Abroad Office during the summer of my freshmen
year changed me forever. I would not be the woman I am
today without the experiences I had while studying
abroad during college. I feel passionately that every
student should spend at least one semester in another
country to experience adventures of their own.
Global Tiger Tales Index List
Created 1/23/2006, rev.
09/22/2009 11:30:07 AM