Offering a great variety of courses, landscapes, cultural experiences and endless expanses to explore; Australia is a perfect study abroad destination choice for many CSB/SJU students. Fremantle, Western Australia, is home to the University of Notre Dame Australia (UNDA), CSB/SJU's partner institution since 2000. With more than 50,000 years of aboriginal history, Australia is impossible to sum up in a few short sentences. Students who have studied abroad at UNDA agree that one semester is just not enough to explore this continent and country which is home to more than 22 million people.
Because CSB/SJU students directly enroll at UNDA, the Australia study abroad programs offers a large variety of courses. You will have the opportunity to earn credits towards your major, minor and Common Curriculum requirements at CSB/SJU. UNDA offers courses in:
CSB/SJU students take one course (Study Abroad Seminar) from their CSB/SJU faculty director. The second course required for all students is the Australian History and Culture course, taught by a UNDA faculty member. Finally, students choose three courses from the Academic Course Catalog at UNDA. This combination of courses makes UNDA a great selection for most CSB/SJU students. Exact course offerings at UNDA are available only a few months before the semester begins, however courses tend to be repeated from year to year. Students can consult past Academic Course Catalogs for more information about potential course offerings.
Please note that not every course is offered every semester, but you can get a good idea of what courses are typcially offered by exploring the course catalogs above. All UNDA courses are preapproved to fulfill the various requirements of the CSB/SJU Common Curriculum. Students wishing to earn credit towards their major or minor will need to seek approval from their department chair during the pre-departure process. The CSB/SJU Psychology Depatment has already vetted all UNDA courses and determined how these will count towards your degree. If you are interested in psychology, you can explore these options here.
Students have full access to all university academic resources and supports including the library, computer labs, academic resource center, writing lab, tutoring office and more.
The Australia programs offer CSB/SJU students the opportunity to live with and study alongside Australian and other international students. UNDA is a comprehensive university with many of the same student clubs, organizations, sports and recreation opportunities as are offered at CSB/SJU, plus some which are uniquely Australian. The Student Life Officecan help students connect with activities that are a good fit for them. In addition, students can pursue other areas of interest or volunteer in Fremantle and Perth.
Exploring Australian's unique landscape, culture and animal life is one of the many extraordinary parts of this program. Students will visit a local animal rehabilitation and educational center, the Fremantle Prison and the Maritime Museum as a part of the program.
Also included with the program is a multi-day excursion in Western Australia which is linked to the topics covered in the the Australian History and Society course. Visits are made to many of the important historical and geographically significant areas of Western Australia. It is also a goal of this excursion to introduce students more directly to the Aboriginal culture as well as make connections to Australian's Benedictine heritage.
Other UNDA courses offer academic excurions as a part of their curriculum. Many students have taken advantage of the archealogical digs which accompany the Introduction to Archaeology course.
Students will also have a study break during which they may choose to explore other areas of Western Australia. Many students will also spend time on the Eastern Coast of Australia in Sydney, Melbourne or Cairns. This is oftentimes most economical when done before arriving in Fremantle or after the conclusion of the semester.
Students live in dorm-like accommodations called the P&O Hotel. This is located in the heart of downtown Fremantle, close to the academic buildings of UNDA. The P&O Hotel is a refurbished hotel which now includes student rooms (double occupancy), shared bathrooms, living areas, and cooking facilities. Students will have access to wireless internet and several computers in the residence hall.
Australia runs on the southern hemisphere's academic calendar which begins in mid-February. The approximate program dates for the CSB/SJU are mid-February to late June for spring semester.
For more information on the Program Fees for this program, please refer to the Australia program brochure. Another great resource is the Financing your Experience brochure. This brochure includes estimates of what past participants spent on this program, along with information regarding scholarships and financial aid for study abroad.
Australia's economy and cost of living remain relatively high compared to the US and other study abroad sites. Students are encouraged to seek scholarship opportunities and to consider a part-time job while in Australia.
The student visa granted by Australia allows students to work up to 20 hours per week. CSB/SJU students have found jobs on UNDA's campus as a Resident Assistant or Ground's Crew member, around Fremantle in the local movie theater or retail shops, or in one of the many Fremantle cafes and restaurants. With minimum wage of $15.96 AUD per hour, it may be a good way to subsidize your semester abroad. And many students have commented that it was a great way to interact with more Australians. However, students need to balance their desire to explore and travel with the requirements of working.