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Hi! I'm Marita - your International Student Adviser at the Warrnambool Campus.
A little about me! I began my life in the Australian outback in a small desert town in the Northern Territory. It is a beautiful, wild place that I have many fond memories of. I caught horses and swam in waterholes, climbed mountain ranges, walked where I pleased and was protected by a whole community. It was an extraordinary beginning.
My family moved from there to South Australia and then, luckily, to Victoria where we came across Warrnambool. I returned to Warrnambool with my small family as I remembered it being a family friendly community with beautiful beaches and a ‘liberating’ holiday feel in the air.
I began my career in international education at the South West institute of TAFE, where I organised student activities and community events. I then started to look after international students. I found great satisfaction in supporting and watching newly arrived students settle into their lives in Australia, representing their nation, while also absorbing and becoming more ‘Aussified’ as the year progressed! My position at Deakin as the International Student Advisor has meant that I can focus my energy solely on international students, which is what I enjoy the most.
The best piece of advice that I could give to an international student would be ‘don’t be scared to be involved!’ Challenge yourself, and just do it.! Volunteer, meet people, talk to as many people as you can, make friends by playing sport, get a job outside of your comfort zone (English speaking, if English is your second language) and you’ll find you have a place in the community. It's a lovely feeling to realise that it doesn’t matter where you’re from, you can still belong anywhere. These opportunities and the memories you make in life don’t always come around twice! Make the most of it.