Five Reasons You Should Go on a JCU Exchange Program


Have you completed a year of study at James Cook University?

Are you bored with your everyday routine here, and are looking to spice up your life?

You should consider applying to study overseas for a semester or two through the JCU Exchange Program.

By Tegan Neilsen

Here are some reasons you should think about applying:

  1. You get to stay in another country for months at a time.

Okay, yes. You could always go backpacking after you finish school. But backpacking doesn’t always offer accommodation and the ease of living that staying on campus at a university does. Plus if you go on exchange, you will be surrounded by students in the same boat as you.

  1. You gain independence you wouldn’t otherwise have had you stayed in your home country.

One of the best things people gain from being overseas and travelling is independence. Having to book your own flights, accommodation – not just to get there, but throughout the entire time you’re away – teaches you how to be more independent. Also, having your parents on the other side of the world means that mum and dad can’t help you out every time you have a problem.

  1. Speaking of help…

There’s nothing worse than being alone in a foreign country and getting into some sort of trouble. Whether it’s financial or just something you’re unsure of, the university you’re attending will always have certain support systems in place specifically for their international students. Crisis averted!

  1. You’ll gain Instagram followers. (Not super important, but it’s certainly a bonus.)

Posting beautiful photos of London, Paris and anything else you see is bound to get you noticed on the net. Before you know it you’ll have stacks more followers on Instagram. (Just remember to hashtag just about everything you can think of.)

EDINBURGH: University exchanges can take you almost anywhere. CREDIT: Tegan Neilsen

EDINBURGH: University exchanges can take you almost anywhere. CREDIT: Tegan Neilsen

  1. Most importantly, you’ll get to have fun and travel while still contributing to your degree.


The friendships and experiences you will gain studying abroad, although it sounds cheesy, will honestly last you a lifetime. When else in your lifetime are you going to get an opportunity to stay in another country for several months while still being provided with a home? What more could you want?

Though going on exchange can be scary, it is honestly one of the best things I’ve ever done. If you’re worried about money, you can apply for scholarships both from your home university and the university you’re applying to overseas.

Where there’s a will, there’s a way.

If you’re interested in going on exchange, contact the JCU Exchange office at or at Student Mobility Office, Building 8 on the Townsville campus.