Classes have begun
This past week, we started our classes. I am taking Consumer Behavior, Social Media, and Sydney Landscapes & History. When comparing the course load and grading system to Hope College, there are many differences. For instance, you are never graded on your homework and the professor would not know if you did it or not. Each week, we usually have a quiz for most of my classes but that is not graded, it is more so just to see if you are on track with the lessons. We have many readings, and these you do on your own terms and take notes as you please. When looking at the grading system, it is a bit intimidating. For example, one of my glasses has two grades that go into it. These graded portions entail a paper (40%) and the final exam (60%). As you can probably infer, you must give these assignments your all. To be successful in these courses, you have to do all the assigned readings, even if it is only brought up once in class. You also cannot procrastinate because the readings/tutorials are very time-consuming.
Some fun in the sun
One evening as the sun was coming to a fall, my roommates and I all went to Bondi Beach and had a sunset swim. This was my first time swimming at a beach in Sydney. It was absolutely gorgeous to see the sun hitting the houses during golden hour with an orange hue surrounding us wherever we looked. Although the water was salty and cold, and the waves were strong, it still reminded me of Lake Michigan. I noticed the beach was filled with people from all over the world as I heard an array of different accents and languages walking along the beach.
Later in the week, when the weather was 75 degrees and clear skies, we went surfing! Before we went in, we slathered on some zinc and had a lesson from two surfing instructors. When attempting to surf the waves, it was a lot more difficult to stay up than we could have predicted. Many times, I would say, “The next wave is mine, I can feel it”, and then I would take an aggressive fall, as I did on the fives waves before that. I did manage to get up and stay there for at least five waves, so the failed attempts were worth it! My friends and I are planning on renting some boards in the upcoming weeks and going again, so hopefully, we will all get better!
A day at the zoo!
On Saturday, we went to the Taronga Zoo! It took us about an hour to get there by bus and the tram, but we were lucky enough to go over the Sydney Harbour Bridge, so the views made the trip enjoyable. Once we were at the Zoo, we could see the city across the harbor which is a sight I will never forget. They even had a sky safari there that overlooked elephants, giraffes, and other animals. We also took the ferry back into the city which was an amazing experience as we passed the Opera House and dozens of beautiful sailboats and yachts.
This upcoming week
This weekend, some of our friends at Bond University are coming to stay with us here in Sydney. I am super excited to hear about their travels so far and for us to take them around the city and show them as much as we can in four days! We are planning on visiting them at the Gold Coast sometime within the next two months too, so it works out perfectly. My friends and I are also planning a trip to go somewhere over our five-day break at the end of October so I will keep you updated on where we book our tickets!
Overall, this week gave me a glimpse as to what my course load will look like so I can better manage my time while I’m aboard. My roommates and I have all agreed that we want to see as much as possible and do as many things as we can within the next three months so I’m hoping to continue giving you good content to read about!
Can’t wait to update you all next week,
Kassie Lamar 🙂