The world’s only country which is also its own continent, Australia is widely regarded both for its immense natural beauty and the high quality of life enjoyed by its citizens. Embarking on a high school program in Australia will give you a rare opportunity to immerse yourself in the Aussie way of life, while learning all about the history of the region and embarking on exciting outings to such destinations as the Outback, Fraser Island, and Great Barrier Reef (not to mention kangaroo selfies!!!). Are you ready for an adventure served upside-down-unda?
Australia is the world’s sixth largest country and its third least densely populated, largely due to the vast untapped wilderness of the Outback which spans the interior of the country. Most cities where you might embark to for a high school program in Australia are located along the country’s expansive eastern coastline. While Australia is its own continent, the broader region of Oceania encompasses nearby countries such as New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, and the Solomon Islands, as well.
Sydney, the country’s largest city and major hub of global, commercial, and cultural activity, is usually the most popular destination where to embark on a high school program in Australia. Melbourne, the country’s second most populous city and widely acclaimed as one of the most livable places on earth, is another great destination to look into high school programs in Australia.
Beyond these two major cities, other cities such as Brisbane, Canberra, and Perth also can offer very enriching environments for a high school program abroad in Australia. Many programs will also travel frequently throughout the country rather than stay rooted in one location, which is a good option for students who want to see as much of the continent as possible during their time abroad.
Programs & Courses
High school programs in Australia come in all different shapes and sizes. For starters, student exchange and other academic programs will enable you to enroll at a local Australian high school and earn course credit which can transfer back to your home country. These programs are most popular over the summer term, lasting for several weeks, but some are offered for full semesters during the school year as well.
Other high school programs in Australia are service-oriented rather than focused on academics, enabling you to volunteer on a wide range of local projects that can help the communities where you are living. Some of the most popular areas where you might volunteer in during a high school program in Australia include environmentalism, education, and childcare.
Lastly, adventure travel and cultural exploration programs are also a popular option among high school students looking for an action-packed experience of the Australian continent. These programs generally last for a few weeks and may combine elements of education and volunteering with the opportunities for outdoor adventure and culturally immersive activities across the country. These programs are also more likely to move about between different locations, rather than stay rooted in one city.
Scholarships & Costs
Australia is an expensive country to travel, and program fees which cover housing, transportation, meals, and tuition can amount to costing a pretty penny. There are a variety of ways that you can help soften the financial burden of your high school program in Australia: start by checking out our scholarship directory and fundraising page!
Accommodation & Visas
Homestays are a very popular form of accommodation during high school programs in Australia, giving you the opportunity to immerse yourself fully in local family life. Student dormitories are also offered by some programs, and if you are moving about frequently as part of your itinerary, then you will likely be staying at a variety of different hostels, hotels, and inns.
You will generally need to apply for a visa before you embark on your high school program abroad in Australia, a process which your program provider will help guide you through. In the meantime, you can check out our Australian Embassy Directory for more information about Australia’s visa policy toward your home nation.
Benefits & Challenges
Explore. Leaving your homeland to explore an entirely new country while still in high school can be a definitive experience, and one where you catch your first case of the travel bug. Australia, with its immense natural beauty and adventurous spirit, is a great place to start.
Learn. Even if you are not enrolling in academic courses as part of your high school program abroad in Australia, you will learn more through the process of travelling and immersing yourself in a new culture than you ever thought possible.
Connect. Embarking on a high school program in Australia is the opportunity to forge friendships with like-minded peers who you are travelling with, as well as local Australians you meet along the way. Get ready for your global network to expand!
Leaving home to enroll in a high school program in Australia may seem like a daunting venture, but it is one that you treasure forever as a formative experience. The four walls of a high school classroom will sure feel small when you return!