CISabroad - Semester on the Gold Coast - Bond University

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About

As you might gather from the name, the Gold Coast is truly spectacular. Spend a semester soaking it in as you study abroad at Bond University in Queensland, Australia. This highly ranked and modern university delivers small class sizes, innovative courses, and cutting-edge sporting facilities (Australian Olympic swimmers train at Bond’s pool!). The Gold Coast is famous for its gleaming beaches, epic surfing, electric nightlife, and Aussie charm. Studying abroad on the Gold Coast is as good as it sounds!

Highlights
  • Small student body of 4,000 students = personalized attention
  • Extensive sports facilities on campus, free for students to use
  • On- and off-campus living options with possible meal plan
  • Week-long Bond University orientation where you meet locals and sign up for campus clubs
  • Convenient semesters in September, January, and May, similar to the U.S. academic calendar

Questions & Answers

Reviews

99%
based on 16 reviews
  • Academics 9.1
  • Support 9.6
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 8.9
  • Safety 9.4
Showing 1 - 15 of 16
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Shealah
10/10

The best place to be!!

Having the opportunity to study at Bond was amazing. Not only was it super fun but the staff, students and style of learning was great. It was cool being able to see how they do things a little differently. I made a ton of awesome friends and made so many memories to last a lifetime.

How can this program be improved?
Having orientation closer to the school location
Yes, I recommend this program
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Erin
10/10

Gold Coast 2018

Studying abroad was one of the best decisions I had ever made. Going abroad helped me to realize how much was truly out there in the world to see, everywhere I went had something unique and different to see, I was always having a new experience. I also traveled and went abroad on my own, this helped me to become a more independent person. I was able to branch out and I didn't hold back on new things. I also got to meet incredible people over the 4 month span and couldn't be more thankful for that. The staff from CIS was also incredible, my program coordinator in Australia was so helpful and very personable.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Regan
10/10

Best 4 months of my life!

I came in with a very open mind and little expectations. The size of my program enabled me to meet my other group members and build relationships with them day one. Our on site coordinator was great, although we didn’t see her very much she periodically checked in and was accessible to us with no problems. Bond is by far the nicest university I’ve attended. Not only do they provide some of the best education, but the professors actually genuinely care about your education! They have some of the nicest facilities a university could ever have, they offer heaps of activities for students, and they make sure to include everyone. The location of Bond was really great too- easy to use public transportation and close enough to nightlife. Only thing I wish had been different is getting to know more locals, because I spent most of my time with Americans or other international students. I was lucky enough to have one Aussie roommate and she was amazing. She will forever be one of my closest and truest friends. If you like the nightlife scene and like the beach- this is the route for you! I couldn’t have imagined this trip going any better for me. I even booked a trip back already!

How can this program be improved?
Integrating international students with the locals.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Rob
9/10

Abroad at Bond

During my time I met many people and experienced a whole new way of life. One that I will hold with me and cherish but also learn from it as I bring it back home. I also learned that going abroad most of all is expensive,but you cannot put a value on an experience like this. If you are on the edge but don't know how you can make it, think about if you'll ever be able to have this experience again and don't be afraid to take new leaps and journeys. It pays itself off in the end. After all I not only went,I experienced this journey with my girlfriend who I then proposed to while there. So take that leap and take advantage of every second of the ride.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Hannah
10/10

Best 4 Months of My Life!

I can honestly say that the four months I spent in Austraila were the best ones of my life yet. The whole experience was just so unreal. The environment was amazing and something like I've never seen with all the wildlife and scenic places. The people were so welcoming, kind and laidback, always giving us tips on how to enjoy our time here in the best way. And the activities offered were endless and always an amazing memory. My academic experience was also one for the books with the amazing professors and courses offered to further my education while having the adventure of my life. It became my favorite country and if I don't end up moving back for good, I will definitely make it an annual holiday.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Holly
10/10

Changing for the Better

Dear future travelers,
Picture where your life is right now. If you’re living comfortably but there’s still that little voice in the back of your head saying that something doesn’t feel “right,” I encourage you to listen to it. If you’re feeling frustrated, trapped or unhappy, I promise you that studying abroad in the Gold Coast will liberate you.
Before going abroad, I was an entirely different person. To be honest, I was quite unhappy and was convinced that I was suffering from depression. Leaving everything I knew behind wasn’t easy, especially the first few weeks, but it made me realize something that I’ll take with me for the rest of my life. It taught me that you can challenge everything you ever thought yourself to be and reinvent yourself. All the preconceptions I had about myself were wrong. Before Australia, I never would’ve imagined myself enjoying skydiving, getting certified as a scuba diver and learning to surf. I also adopted a whole new way of thinking through the Buddhist philosophy course I took at Bond Univerdity. I was inspired to begin practicing meditation and be more compassionate towards others. I shed all my negative ruminations and was able to become a more positive and emotionally balanced person. My experience left me with so many incredible memories, and I know that yours will too. Here’s my best advice I can give you as you plan your trip to the Gold Coast.

1. Develop a self care routine while undergoing culture shock. Culture shock and jet lag are both very real, and they can make you feel a bit off in the beginning. Be sure to connect with people from home, get rest, and do whatever it is that helps soothe you, whether it’s going for a run, watching Netflix or my personal favorite, meditation.

2. Challenge everything you think you know about yourself. Afraid of roller coasters when you were younger? Go to one of the many theme parks for a day and conquer that fear. Try new foods, explore and take part in the culture as much as possible.

3. Get to know the locals! While you’ll be meeting great people through your program, make sure to talk to the Australian and international students outside of the program. You’ll be surprised how friendly and open they are to getting to know you if you are willing to get to know them. While abroad I made friends with students from Australia, Brazil and Norway.

4. Choose your travel partners wisely. It’s easy to get excited and want to book trips with someone the first day you meet them, but before you plan anything, be sure you are compatible. Ask them what kinds of things they are looking to do while in a given location. Some people prefer sightseeing while others prefer to explore the clubs. Be sure you can live with them for a week. If you travel with the right people, you will have an amazing time.

5. Make it your own personal experience. Everyone’s experience will mean something different to them, and however you want to spend it is up to you. Just go out there explore, take pictures and videos and I recommend keeping a journal. Because at the end of the day nobody will share the same memories as you.

Your flights almost here, so it’s time for me to go. Just kick back and relax because it’s going to be a long flight, but I promise you it will be worth everything. Safe Travels.

Sincerely,
Holly
(Former CIS abroad student)

How can this program be improved?
More opportunities to get to know everyone in the program instead of just one orientation group.
Yes, I recommend this program
Tyler
10/10

Best experience of my life

My semester in the Gold Coast was the most life-changing experience I’ve ever had. It thought me that there is so much more to explore in the world, taught me all about different cultures, and most importantly taught me to budget and make the most of what I have in life. The CIS team members who guided us during our stay were so involved and the sweetest people who really made Australia feel like home, they were always there to help and support, even if it was just to say hello and check up on you. There was so much to do both in and around Australia and CIS set us up for success. Bond Uni is academically challenging and is perfect for people of all different majors. Finally, what I loved most about this experience was the people I’ve met and places I’ve traveled along the way, and for that I am forever grateful for having experienced this journey and chosen CIS abroad. I will hold on to these memories forever.

How can this program be improved?
NA
Yes, I recommend this program
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Hannah
10/10

Best 4 Months

Going in to my semester, I was not really sure what to expected, and had all of the emotions of excitement and nervousness built up inside of me. Overall, I would say my semester blew my expectations out of the water. What made it so unique was just being able to compare my experiences and opportunities such as scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef, visiting Thailand, hiking in New Zealand, etc. to those of my friends in Europe. In Australia, while it has some similarities to the US, there are so many different opportunities that I may never have again. Studying at Bond was also an eye opener because of the importance of education in Australia, and while there was time to travel and have fun, I definitely had to spend time studying and learned a lot. 11/10 recommend it.

How can this program be improved?
This program, overall, was great. A few areas of improvement would be the planning prior to leaving home, and the housing. Going into the trip, I felt as though it would have been easier and less nerve-racking to have had a set itinerary of what we were doing and a more detailed plan of how we were getting there. Providing the information more in advance would have been helpful too. As for housing, our apartment was very un-furnished and we did not have many necessities such as silverware and a trashcan. Some things we expected to have to buy but it was disappointing to have to be so many apartment items for temporary housing.
Yes, I recommend this program
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kelsey
10/10

A life changing experience

Choosing to study abroad was a big choice, one that not many students decide to do, by making the decision to study abroad with CIS in Australia was one of the best choices I have ever made. If you are considering whether or not you want to study abroad or have decided but not sure where you want to go CIS is definitely there to help you make that decision. The small group of “guides” honestly made us feel so welcome and made the process of leaving home to cross the world a really smooth transition. A useful tip for those considering abroad is to just be open minded for everything; meeting new people, trying new foods, experience their culture and traditions! Being submerged in the country and what it offers was the best thing for me to experience the whole semester! Throughout the 5 months I had made some of the best memories with the friends I had made through CIS and I would not give it back for anything.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Nicole
10/10

My Semester On The Gold Coast- Spring 2018

"Write a Review on your Study Abroad Experience for a chance to win a trip back overseas".
I rave about my trip abroad to almost everybody who will listen. So when I saw this opportunity on the CIS Abroad Instagram, I jumped at the idea of writing a review of my semester and how CIS abroad brilliantly accommodated me, and my friends also in this program with me. So, I guess I should start from the beginning...

Everybody always says how much studying abroad changes you. In fact, when I told my family and friends that I was going to Australia (which had been a goal two years in the making) I heard one or two things repeatedly. First one being, "Wow! It's going to have such a amazing impact on your life! Watch, you'll see", and the other set of people saying, "Meet yourself a nice Australian man!". So naturally, on the plane over I had such high expectations of things I was going to do, and the people I would meet in a few short hours. Even from when I was picked up at the airport, I knew that CIS Abroad staff in Australia and back home had my back. Jackie Chapman was one of those people. She made this group of college students really bond with each other. It was like we were all one big family.

The excursions planned for the first few days were probably one of my highlights of the whole trip. In just three short days we managed to see so much of beautiful Cairns, got to meet such amazing people, and got to be adventurous in multiple activities such as snorkeling and scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef (I ended up falling in love with scuba diving from this encounter) , holding Koalas, feeding kangaroos, embracing and learning about Aboriginal Australian people, and so much more!

The fun did not stop there! Throughout the semester students in the CIS Abroad program also had optional excursions such as hiking, and food meet-ups! Jackie was amazing at organizing us all and making sure that we knew that if we needed anything, that she would be there.

So, with my time coming to a close in Australia, I looked back on what all those people had said to me. Australia changed my life for the better. I found myself and watched myself grow and with all the travel that I did, grew a maturity that I did not have before. CIS Abroad assisted me with this change, and gave me the opportunity to open my eyes to the world of travel. I cannot thank CIS Abroad more, they made me realize that I love traveling, and I love living in Australia. In the next few years I plan to travel back and get back in touch with all the friends CIS abroad has helped me make.

As I got on the plane and looked behind me at Australia for the last time, I smiled and reminisced on the places I went to, the people I met, the experiences I had. My semester went better than I could ever imagine. I would 100000% recommend that others use CIS Abroad and travel the world to gain culture experiences and knowledge about other places besides the United States. If somebody I knew were to go on the exact same program I went on, my biggest piece of advice would be,
1. To take advantage of all the activities presented through CIS Abroad and Bond University, and
2. Really embrace your time in Australia- it goes by way too fast!

Thank you so much CIS Abroad for a amazing semester, and for changing my life for the better!

How can this program be improved?
Like stated above, I loved my study abroad experience. CIS Abroad really took care of us students overseas. The only suggestion I would make is that I wish there were more diverse excursions when I went to my host city. A lot of the excursions were very physical , meaning long hikes and surfing. I have a torn Labral in my hip, which made it very hard sometimes to participate in activities.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Gib
10/10

Incredible 4 months

My semester at Bond University was an awesome 4 months. I was able to meet heaps of awesome people, see unbelievable sights, and hang out with loads of cool animals. The experience really opened my eyes to how big and awesome the world is. The professors at Bond are very experienced in their respective fields and offer practical insights into subjects. Bond University offers tons of opportunities to get involved. Join as many clubs and teams as you can as this will be your best opportunity to meet people and really get immersed in the Aussie culture.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Bridget
10/10

Studying Abroad Changed My Life!

I always knew I wanted to study abroad, even before college. I was torn between Australia and Italy and in the end, I decided that traveling to Europe seemed easier to do after college than traveling to Australia so I took the opportunity and chose Australia. It was hard to decide between all of the different programs, but Bond offered a schedule that fit my timeline much better than the others (Bond "spring" semester is January through April and other unis were February through June/July). CIS provided an amazing orientation experience and gave the perfect opportunities to make friends. I loved going abroad through a program instead of doing an exchange because I knew I'd be able to meet people in a similar situation of knowing nobody while in a program. I absolutely LOVE Jackie Chapman (Gold Coast site director) and she made everything so easy and smooth. Go on every excursion they plan!! They're all things you would've planned to do anyways! Studying abroad with CIS was the best thing I've ever done and I miss it everyday. I made the most amazing friends while abroad and I wouldn't have wanted to do anything differently.

How can this program be improved?
The only negative I have is that I wish the management at Varsity Shores were prepared and ready for us when we arrived. It's almost like they didn't know we were coming. I still definitely enjoyed living off-campus instead of on-campus because I felt like I had more freedom and the villas were decent.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Kayla
10/10

The experience of a life time

CISabroad and Bond University have given me the most amazing experience I will never forget. When people tell you it's the best four months of your life, they aren't kidding. I was able to make life long friendships and travel the world, while also getting college credits. The excursions provided by CIS were awesome, and the site director's made everyone's semester that much better. We all became close with each other, as well as our site director's. The Gold Coast is such a great place with so much going on, I was never bored. Bond Uni is also amazing. The most beautiful campus! Bond is 50% international students, making it easy to meet people from all over the world. I would relive my abroad experience in a heart beat.

How can this program be improved?
More details on housing selections/options would be helpful.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Alex
10/10

A semester in paradise

Education: The classes I took at Bond University were overall small in size, and taught by great instructors. If at any point I felt like I was falling behind, I could easily ask for help and it was given. Also, from my experience the professors were all very accommodating of traveling contingent upon you expressing that you will make up the work you missed!

Housing: Some of the best dorm style housing I have ever seen. I lived in the "accommodation center", in a double dorm (with one roommate and a full sized bathroom in the dorm). On a weekly basis the dorms have housekeeping that comes in to clean your room (wash the sheets, make the bed, clean the bathroom, etc.) One of the other great perks is that all the bedding and toiletries were already provided and restocked by the housekeeping, which made it super easy as a study abroad student already on a budget!

Food: The dining hall features a menu that only changes slightly throughout the semester, and it is done on a pay per item basis (rather than a buffet style like those featured in schools within the US). This was one of the only challenges, as you have to budget pretty efficiently through balancing eating out and cooking meals in order to not run out of money by the end of the semester. However, there are several great restaurants in the downtown area that feature affordably priced food options and there are kitchens on every floor of the dorms.

Safety: The safety in the both the school as well as Gold Coast as a city was great. I did not at any point feel unsafe, even when I would travel on the public transportation alone at night.

Overview: I would 100% study abroad through this program again. CIS does a great job of integrating you into Australian culture from the minute you step off the plane. The excursions that we were taken on through the program added immensely into the overall experience, and the on site support for any questions or concerns was extremely prompt and helpful!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Kenzie
10/10

Bond Uni: The best 4 Months of My Life

My experience in Australia was completely life changing. It pushed me to my limits, testing my worldview and opening my eyes to new adventures. Every moment and memory impacted the way I see myself and the world around me. CISabroad was definitely the right program for me. I met some of the greatest mates from all around the world that I’ll hold in my heart forever. The support I received from Seth before the semester began and the genuine care I felt from Jackie & Keith onsite really helped me feel at home abroad. We also had a wicked cool orientation in Sydney & went on several awesome excursions that allowed me to see more of Australia than I would have on my own! It’s hard to put into words how much this experience actually impacted me, but I get a smile across my face every time I look back on a memory made through CISabroad.

How can this program be improved?
I would want a more specific packing list, perhaps created by students who attended the program previously.
Yes, I recommend this program

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