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Inside Kendall

From Downtown Chicago to Down Under: Study Abroad in Australia

School of Hospitality Management student Savannah McMeekin (Hotel/Lodging Management) shares her study abroad experience at Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School in Australia.

“My favorite thing about the hospitality industry is the opportunity it gives you to travel the world,” shared Savannah. “I haven’t even finished my degree at Kendall College yet and already I’ve been able to travel and study in Australia.  I also love the chance to meet people from all over the world and experience new cultures and ways of life.”

While traveling to Sydney and to Bondi beach on the weekends were one of her favorite things to do in Australia, Savannah was there to study Hospitality at Blue Mountains. Like Kendall College, Blue Mountains is a member of Laureate International Universities, a global network of more than 70 accredited campus-based and online universities offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 780,000 students around the world.

blue mountains international hotel school study abroadMy favorite class at Blue Mountains was Industry Placement (IP201). In this class we learned the proper way to construct a cover letter and resume, the appropriate way to interview and what to expect while working in the industry,” says Savannah. “Kendall prepared me by providing classes that are essential to the success in hospitality. Blue Mountains focuses on immersing students in the workings of a hotel, but I felt more prepared and ready to jump right in (working the front desk and in the restaurants on campus) than if I hadn’t studied at Kendall first.”

“I really did enjoy the “practical” class at Blue Mountains. This is where students become a part of the daily workings of the school. We cook in the kitchen for all students and staff, become servers in the café or restaurant on campus and also working behind the bar and coffee station. This course also provides us with the experience of housekeeping, front desk agents and concierge.”

Savannah has “lots of advice” for anyone wishing to visit Australia or study abroad, including:study abroad laureate kendall college blue mountains australia

  • Save up! Australia is very expensive, (think $7 for a coffee). “I recommend opening a local bank account to avoid international fees.”
  • Get a local cell phone – it’s more convenient and less expensive. And, don’t forget an adapter!
  • Travel around as much as you can.
  • Sydney is a popular spot with the Opera house and the Harbor Bridge and there are a variety of restaurants and shops.
  • “Bondi Beach is also one of my favorite places; it’s a perfect place to relax after a busy week.”
  • If you can, take a trip up to the Gold Coast in Queensland. “It is more relaxed than Sydney, has a lot of great beaches, and is a bit cheaper too.”
  • Go shopping for souvenirs at Market City near Central Station. “You can find great items like the ones sold in tourist shops, but for half the price!”

Have questions for Savannah or about study abroad opportunities at Kendall College? Leave a comment below!

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