Alejandra: Feeling Welcome in Australia

Images - Alejandra

It has been just over a year since I arrived in Australia and I have not felt anything but welcomed here. Aussies (slang for Australians) seem to enjoy the diversity of nationalities, and I feel it exists in them a curiosity for knowing about other cultures, foods, and traditions. When I arrived in Australia, I was afraid that people would not understand my Latin American accent. I was surprised to discover Australians, from and outside JCU, listened very carefully to what I had to say made it easy for me to talk to in English. Many Aussies are patient and it made me feel confident and relaxed about learning and speaking English. 

 

In fact, cultural diversity is very important in Australian. Every day Australia celebrates Harmony Day. It is a day people of different cultures and nationalities come together to acknowledge the diversity of people living in Australia. This year I attended the Harmony Day celebrations at the Museum of Tropical Queensland. My partner prepared some Venezuelan dishes to share along with many others participants: Japanese, Somalians, Germans, Egyptians, Iranian, and of course Australian. Representatives from different countries performed dances and songs from their respective countries, all of which was completely new to me. JCU also celebrates international diversity and Australian Aboriginal culture on Harmony day, a celebration to recognize the different cultures coexisting at JCU. Everyday I am happy that I chose to study in Australia, and I’m glad I’ve had the opportunity to share aspects of my culture with Aussies and people from other countries.

Indonesian girls dancingIf I have to describe Australia in one word, I would say “diverse”. Australia is full people of different nationalities, accents and cultures. Studying in Australia is an opportunity to learn about many different cultures that converge here. You´ll make friends from every corner of the world and you will have the chance of knowing different cultures and backgrounds. Studying at James Cook University is not only an Aussie experience, is a worldwide experience.

With some aussie friends

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