Mandy - University of Alberta

B Business Management/International Hotel & Tourism Management
Semester 2, 2018
A continuous smile of happiness and self-growth, both personally and professionally.

Academic experience

I studied Management skills for supervisors and leaders (SMO402), Performance management and Rewards (SMO416), Negotiation (SMO412) and Rights in the workplace (SMO413). I enjoyed the learning style at the UofA. It was a more practical approach to learning with more interactive activities in class and more personalised teaching. The biggest challenge I faced was adjusting to the new learning style and the fact that classes weren’t recorded so I had to attend. Although this was a minor challenge I found the classes more interesting so I enjoyed going. Enrolment and registration was a bit different given the smaller class sizes and that each class does not have multiple options like UQ, so students have to work out their schedule based on class times.

Personal experience

I gained a lot from exchange, including, friendships, personal skills, entertainment, and a holiday. I created friendships who I am still in contact with and plan on visiting again in the future. The personal skills I developed whilst on exchange allowed me to grow as a person and understand the person I want to be I the future. I decided to go on exchange because I needed a break from the same old day-to-day routine I was in at UQ, I needed to remind myself of why I what I wanted from life. Exchange helped me grow as a persona and give me the change of scenery I needed to grow.

Accommodation

I lived on campus at UofA and met the majority of my friends through this option. Living on campus made it easy to adjust into campus life and attend classes (especially given that all my classes were in a building attached to my accommodation). On campus accommodation was extremely good when the weather got colder as it meant that I was only exposed to the cold when I went off campus.

Costs

Whilst on my exchange I spent approximately $20,000 however, this included 2 moths of travel through Canada ad the US after classes ended. The exchange itself cost me approximately $10000-$15000.

Challenge

The biggest challenged I faced whilst on exchange was when my mum was involved in an accident back in Australia. I got a call from my sister one morning telling me that mum had been in an accident and had been airlifted unconscious to the PA hospital. At the time I was very upset and wasn’t sure what to do (should I go back to Australia or should I stay?). I was lucky enough that I have family living in the US that I could talk to and visit. Having family close by made my decision to stay in Canada easier. Although I was extremely worried about my mum back home, I had to trust that she was being looked after and would recover. Deep down I new mum would want me to go home and cut my exchange short.

Professional Development

The attributes I developed in personal and professional development were strong mental stability, confidence in myself to adjust to any situation.

Highlight

The biggest highlight of my exchange was ice skating on Lake Louise. This experience was something I dreamed on since the beginning of my exchange and something I will never forget.

Top tips

Research where you want to go and budget for trips. Join the outdoors club, as they organise the best trips for international students (similar to QUEST).