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Sponsoring Department
Summer 2022

As someone who was not familiar with the culture and history of Australia, I was amazed with
the information I learned during my time abroad in Spring 2022. My initial interest surrounding my
travels around Australia was to learn more about disease, health, and history in Australia. As I reflect on
my experience abroad, I feel I did just that. During my time in Australia, I talked with my peers about
how the Australian health care system works. Interestingly enough they had similar complaints as
Americans. Copays were expensive and considering they did not have to pay that in the past they felt like
the Copays were too high and making health care inaccessible for most people. Additionally, I learned
elements of tradition ecological knowledge through my classes and locals in Cairns. For example, I
remember a friend told me about how crushing a specific bug and then smelling the bug helped cleared
blocked noises, and how it was common for people to do.

Although Covid-19 was not a disease, the information I received and how my study abroad
experience went was shaped by it. For example some of the things that I had planned to visit like the
Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park, RPA Museum, and Museum of Human Diseases were closed due to
Covid-19. However I went to different museums and exchanged stories with my friends about our
experience with covid-19 in our respective countries. Some of the museums that I had visited was
Museum of Sydney, Queensland Museum (Brisbane), Sydney Jewish Museum, and Australian museums. I
enjoyed each museum, but my favorite was the Australian Museum because it had a timeline of
Indigenous activist movements and actions from the past to the present and it reminded me of the black
matter movements. It interesting to see something so influential in Australia culture that was similar to
American culture that I have never heard of.

Other ways that I learned about Australian culture and history was through the indigenous
courses I took while there. I took courses like Australia through Time and Place, People of Far North
Queensland, Comparative Indigenous Studies, and Boats and Archaeology. In these classes I have
learned about places deeply connected to Indigenous people or cultures like the Mossman gorge, that I
was actually able to visit. As well as the relationship that Indigenous people and non-indigenous people
have. For example, how settlers colonized Australia and what impact it had on the Indigenous people.
The resistance that Indigenous people put against settlers that is often not talked about. As well I learned
about the Torres strait islands and the Indigenous people living there and the ones living in Australia.
Learning about the Indigenous people living in Australia, showed me how little I knew about the
Indigenous people living within the states. After reflecting on my time abroad and all the lessons I
learned I plan to integrate my experience and narratives I heard into the things that I do and make sure
that I am uplifting