During his exchange in Perth, Dartmouth College student Jaden Oliveras is most looking forward to going a Perth Wildcats game and “cheer for a team he didn’t even know existed a few weeks ago”.
“I am a huge basketball fan and I wonder how basketball is different internationally,” he shared.
Mr Oliveras, who admitted he has never travelled more than three hours’ away from his parents before, is the McCusker Centre for Citizenship’s third Matariki Network of Universities exchange student.
“I applied to the exchange to get a better understanding of how social impact works in a different part of the world and how much culture influences this,” he said.
“A lot of my coursework and jobs on campus focuses on how first-generation low-income students adapt to an elite college.
“I am interested in how Australia deals with the inequalities in education and strategies to combat these inequalities. I believe in everything happens for a reason, and this opportunity came to me in such a way that I knew I had to come to Australia.”
During his 10-week exchange, Mr Oliveras will complete a 100-hour community service internship through the McCusker Centre for Citizenship and assist with various projects.
On a professional level, he said he hoped to gain an understanding of how Australia combatted different inequalities, which he could take back to his work in the USA.
“I am also interested also looking at how my ethnic identity translates to Australian culture,” he said.
Mr Oliveras said he was happy to escape the US winter and celebrate his 21st birthday in warm weather.
“I am looking forward to starting a new life for 10 weeks,” he said.
“Everything from meeting new people, to trying new foods and exploring.”
Visit Global Opportunities for more information on the Global Exchange program.