Greetings from New South Wales! My name is Alex Byington and I am currently a sophomore at Pitt majoring in Marketing and minoring in Economics. I am also pursuing certificates in International Business and Data Analytics. I am here in Sydney via the Global Business Institute, and I could not be more excited to be here. Back on campus, I enjoy you can usually find me in Hillman or the Pete, and I love supporting our Panther squad on the football field. I am also a baseball fanatic and a member of our University’s club baseball team.
I grew up in a small New Jersey suburb outside of New York City (go Yankees), and from as early as I can remember I have loved to travel. I have been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to go to some pretty amazing places and experience different cultures. It has always amazed me how vastly unique people’s lives can be from one part of the globe to the other and is a big reason why I chose to come to Australia and spend a semester here. Choosing Sydney as a city in which to study abroad is one of the best decisions I have ever made, and I cannot wait to keep exploring this amazing global hub.
Within the Global Business Institute and their study abroad affiliate, CAPA, I have not only been taking classes here, but I am also participating in an internship as well. My internship is with a travel company called Ultimate Travel, which specializes in gap year and work/travel programs for young adults. It is pretty awesome that my first internship and real professional experience is taking place outside of the U.S. Before this internship, I had only ever held temporary summer jobs, so gaining experience in a field related to my area of study is definitely one huge advantage of participating in this program. I know this internship will provide me with many of the initial skills I will need to be successful in the workplace, and hopefully it will open my eyes to new potential professional opportunities I hadn’t seriously considered before.
While there is so much exploring to do and work to be done within the internships, the classes here are really awesome too. Learning from Australian professors who are experts in their respective fields is such a cool experience because we are taking in information from a totally different perspective and learning new things we may not otherwise would in an American classroom. These new ideas from an international perspective are definitely beneficial when talking about big topics like marketing or economics.
I am so excited to finally be here in Sydney, studying and working just like a local. Australia is a country I have wanted to visit for my entire life ever since I watched my first Steve Irwin movie. No, not everyone says G’day and no, Sydneysiders are not dressed all up in khaki. But the city and people of Sydney has already been everything I could have wanted and more.
Stay tuned for updates on my adventures in Sydney and beyond. I have tons in store to share with yinz!