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Sydney Internship and Study Abroad: Teresa Aires Rodrigues ’19

It’s been three weeks since we left our little corners of the world and met up in Sydney, and we already have so much to tell!

Teresa Aires Rodrigues ’19
Majors: Business Administration; Sociology and Anthropology
Hometown: Lisbon, Portugal

Teresa Rodrigues and Laura Gottschalk at the Darling Harbour.Teresa and Laura at the Darling Harbour.

Sydney is an incredible city: full of life, different places to go to, and a charming multicultural atmosphere. Public transportation will take you wherever you want to go in a timely manner, the people on the streets will fill your ears with words you have never heard before (from words in other languages to Australia’s very own breakkie), and the beach will make you feel as though it’s Summer all year.

We had a few days after our arrival to adjust to Sydney and make our new apartment feel like home, although some of us (that would be me) had to spend those two days purchasing survival kits and trying to find a missing bag left in Canada. After our dinner with Professor Irani at Sydney’s best Thai food restaurant (where we learned some of Soon Ho’s allergies), we departed to Cairns. The first activity was by far my favorite and an experience I will never forget: we snorkeled the Great Barrier Reef. We went on a boat which took us to the middle of the Ocean where, before we explored the great wonders, a marine biologist briefed us on what we would be able to see and what we should and should not do while snorkeling. On the first site, we had the chance to practice wearing our wetsuits (which protected us from both jellyfish and sunburns) and using our masks to breathe.

Teresa Rodrigues '19 snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef.Teresa snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef.

The second site was where we met Crush (I’m referencing Nemo, in case you haven’t noticed) and his friends. We were so close we could almost touch these beautiful turtles which comfortably swam next to us, making Laura the happiest person on earth! On the third site, we had a small guided tour by our marine biologist, Sam, who pointed out some cool corals and curiosities and showed us where Nemo lives. For me, the last site was the most enchanting as the corals’ bright colors and exquisite shapes reminded me of the song “What a Wonderful world” (go ahead and laugh, because you would have done the same if you had been there). That night, in order to try something new (and cheer up Soon Ho, who had been seasick all day), we had dinner at Corea Corea, a Korean restaurant where Soon Ho ordered (in Korean) very tasty, spicy, and hot traditional dishes.

Teresa, Danielle, Brad, Soon Ho, and Laura at Malanda BakeryTeresa, Danielle, Brad, Soon Ho, and Laura at Malanda Bakery.

On the second day, we had a very authentic Aussie experience, as a true Australian guided us (barefoot) through some of the most beautiful waterfalls and country roads. On one of our stops, the guide told us to check out a famous pie shop, Malanda Bakery. We told the nice ladies where we came from and they were very excited to host such an international crew. Additionally, since they had never had anyone from Portugal, Brad suggested I’d sign something for them. However, the ladies’ excitement and Brad’s persuasion culminated in all of us signing their white wall and naming it Callaham’s wall (yes, Brad was very happy all day).

Back in Sydney, we started our first week of classes and experienced an academic life very different from W&L, with large lecture rooms filled with students, an enormous campus and not enough time to go from one class to another, small campus restaurants everywhere, and hundreds of clubs (or societies, as Aussies call them) to choose from. This was also the week when we got to experience our first soccer football game (the sport Danielle plays at W&L), as the Sydney FC lost against the Kashima Antlers. This was a particularly interesting experience for me, as I compared Australians’ calmness and enthusiasm with under 7,000 fans in the stadium, with the Portuguese loud remarks and passion for the sport with over 40,000 fans in the stadium. This was part of the sports class Brad, Danielle, Laura, and I are taking, which is immersing us in the Australian culture and showing us how a sport can have such different outcomes resulting from the culture shaping it.

We are now starting our internships and getting into our Sydney routines, filled with excitement, new things to see, and more adventures to remember. I can’t wait to see what the next months will bring!

Interested in learning more about the Sydney Internship and Study Abroad Program?

Attend an information session on Tuesday, March 27 from 5-6 p.m. in Huntley 235 to learn more!

Program highlights:

  • Complete up to 2 internships – one domestic and one international.
  • Be a full-time student at Sydney University, the oldest university in Australia.
  • Earn up to 19 W&L credits from coursework and experiential learning.
  • Two different start and end dates to accommodate early return to the US to begin summer internships.
  • Rising sophomores (’21) and juniors (’20) majoring in Accounting, Business Administration and Economics are eligible to apply.

A representative from our third-party vendor (Global Academic Ventures) will also be available to answer your questions.