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Mei Akiba (Japan)

JCU international student experiences rural Australia on placements

As international student Mei Akiba prepares to complete her Bachelor of Environmental Practice degree at JCU Townsville, she reflects on her study journey.

Growing up in Japan and Russia, Mei says the opportunity to study in the tropics aligned seamlessly with her life goals.

“We moved to Russia for my father’s job, so I was completing my Year 12 studies at an international school abroad,” Mei says.

“I was finishing my education in English, so I thought it would be a great idea to continue studying at a university that was taught in English.

“I researched courses online, spoke with some of my tutors and found out that JCU is very well-known around the world for environmental studies, particularly because students undertake practical exercises and real-life field work.

“I also wanted to live in a smaller city, not a big tourist city, so I could improve my English and really focus on my studies.

“I just felt like JCU in Townsville would be the right place for me.”

Mei Akiba.

Image: Mei Akiba exploring the Daintree Rainforest on her placement.

As she edges closer towards graduating, Mei says there have been lots of memorable moments from her time at JCU, including the rural placements she completed as part of her degree.

“I went to Fletcherview Cattle Research Station and studied the relationship between cattle grazing and biodiversity, which was really fun!

“I was in Cairns for my internship , and one of the subjects I did was studying tropical flora of Australia.

“I was in the Daintree Rainforest for 10 days and undertook a lot of research about the rainforest and vegetation communities, which has been the most interesting part of my degree.”

Mei aspires to put her studies to practice and work in the environmental field upon graduation. We wish her a successful and rewarding career!