#TRUstories Chapter 2: I was made for sunny days

Sunny enjoying his strawberry picking experience in a strawberry farm in Brisbane. One of the unique experiences that international students should try in Queensland – this sunshine state has many fruit farms and are open to the public. 

Name: Kim Sun Hyeok Sunny
Institution: Queensland University of Technology, Australia 
Course of study: Bachelor of Business (Management)

Sunny is currently the Singapore student society president at the Queensland University of Technology. He is a 3rd year business student majoring in management. It has always been his passion to lead and interact with people from all walks of life – and study overseas allows him to step out of his comfort zone and experience life like never before. 

What is your experience living and studying in QUT Australia? 

Personally, living in the country during COVID-19 has really been a blessing. Due to strict restrictions and lockdown in the beginning of COVID-19, we are able to enjoy low restrictions such as large meetings or not wearing a mask. But prior to COVID-19 experience in living abroad has been fruitful as I really do manage to meet people from all over the world and have close friends who are not just from Singapore. As much as I do still hang with people from Singapore (comfort zone) but I always enjoy hanging with people from all kinds of background. This form of interaction allows me to learn new cultures and also broaden my circle of friends. Furthermore, Australia is massive so there is much to experience such as road trips or dive trips etc, experience of living in Australia has been really fantastic.

A picture of Sunny and his school mates doing some mountain climbing.

What is the support that the university has provided you in the midst of Covid-19?

QUT has provided lots of help during covid-19 such as longer census dates to allow students who are struggling financially to have more time to pay school fees, offering more scholarships to push students. Even, providing many options for online classes for students to remain safe and also providing students the option of in class learning so as to not miss out on the university experience. The university helpline (HiQ) is always readily available to help answer and queries I had as well! I ‘ve got most of my questions about timetable, lecture and assignment submissions from them! 

How did theRightU supported you for this journey? 

theRightU has supported me in the journey leading up to me getting to the University. They helped me in organising all my paperwork right from day one and all the way to the visa application. It was really easy and not much that I had to do. theRightU pretty much discussed with me what I wanted and that started the journey to studying in Australia. Furthermore, theRightU helped me to get in touch with my seniors so that if I had any queries, I could direct that to them. Also, knowing people before going to QUT helped reduce some of that first day jitters and anxiety. theRightU really makes your life easier in terms of academic planning and paperwork and showing me what basics, I needed to know before heading over.

Sunny with his awesome Singapore student society members in one of their regular school gatherings before COVID-19.

Any advice for students who are keen to study overseas? 

My advice to students who are keen to study abroad is to take the opportunity to do it and do not let fear of missing home or family deter you from it. It is honestly an enriching experience and not often would you be able to do it. Secondly, make newer friends and connections outside of your social circle or comfort zone when you are here, you will never know when these friends or connections can help you in the future. Last advice would be to not stress on how life would be like when you plan to study abroad and leave Singapore. As much as I can tell, it gets easier once you get to know the lay of the land and life is pretty smooth sailing after that. Just make sure to spend more time with family and friends and eat everything you are going to crave, as you are most definitely going to miss Singapore at some point!

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