Donald Carroll - 2014 Program Participant

At Pierce's Pass overlooking Grose Valley in the Blue Mountains.
At Pierce's pass overlooking Grose Valley in the blue mountains. Photo by Donald Carroll

What prompted your interest in working abroad?

The adventure bug was starting to itch more and more after a couple of mediocre years back in the States. I was looking to go on my first big international trip as I started to realized I wasn't getting any younger and the timing was either now or never.The idea of working abroad wasn't really much of thought, until I started to do research on some on some of the best ways to completely immerse yourself inside a country's culture. 

Why did you choose AAG over other work abroad opportunities?

The main reason I chose AAG was the simplified application process of working abroad, and the guarantee of work placement before I arrived into Australia. AAG has a really good support team in the US and Australia, so if you ever needed help there will always be someone there for you talk to. Also, they provide assistance with a lot of the small things, that you don't think of when travelling abroad, that will help you get settled in faster.

What advice would you give to others from the Midwest going to work abroad in Australia? 

The best advice I can give someone from the Midwest that will going to be working abroad in Australia is to continue to make an effort to go out and explore this awesome country to avoid being sucked into the same routine everyday.The time will fly by fast so make the most out of your working holiday.

What makes Australia a particularly great place to work abroad?

I think the best part of working in the Australia is getting to working along with Aussies, please don't take anything they say too seriously. The Aussies are a fun group of people that love to enjoy the simpler things in life, and love poking fun at my strong American accent. Then on my weekends i'm usually out on a bushwalk, road tripping, or hanging out at the beach, all because Australia offers so much to see and do.

What has been your favorite part of your experience so far and why? 

I had some really amazing experiences from going to the Vivid Festival to bush walking over 500 km, but my favorite experience was a small road trip with some mates to The Glow Worm Tunnel in the Blue Mountains. This trip was the first time that I would be driving in Australia, not only was I driving on the opposite side of the road but all of my signals were flipped to the other side. My mates were cracking up, since every time I would attempt to make a turn my windshield wipers would go off not my turn signal.

We also some how managed to find an awesome lookout overlooking Grose Valley. The journey to the tunnel is what made this trip so memorable, and after going through a pothole infested road the glow worms put on a really cool show.

How has your work abroad experience impacted your life?

This work experience abroad has impacted me in so many ways that I really can't grasp all of the effects that will transpire from all of these experiences over the last five months. One thing I do know is that I really enjoy experiencing a country by working abroad, and I will continue to seek out work abroad programs that will continue to allow me to travel around the world.