Behind the scenes of Borneo: The perfect scene for a semester abroad
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Behind the scenes of Borneo: The perfect scene for a semester abroad

Behind the scenes of Borneo: The perfect scene for a semester abroad

Sitting in Southeast Asia’s Malay Archipelago is an island blessed with rugged, natural beauty. Globally-known by soul-searching explorers and dynamic educators, Borneo offers a wondrous landscape for the ambitious learner.

Acting as a prime study abroad destination, it’s no surprise that there are endless advantages to spending a study semester here. Rich in both cultural diversity and ancient rainforest landscapes, there are plenty of reasons for students to fall in love with Borneo’s Sarawak and Sabah states.

Intensive involvement in tropical wildlife conservation

Did you know that almost 150,000 Bornean Orangutans have been lost since 1999? This has cut the population by half, and Borneo is one of the last places on Earth where people can see these majestic creatures roam their natural habitat.

This mountainous island is also home to at least 15,000 plant species (of which 6,000 are found nowhere else in the world) and over 350 bird species, plus 150 reptile and amphibian species.

Due to the vast amount of wildlife wandering around, Borneo is always a hot topic for environmental researchers and ecology students. Because of this, international learners are constantly on the lookout for study opportunities in the heart of East Malaysia.

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Source: Shutterstock

Instead of being confined between classroom walls, students are eager to visit the wild and wonderful terrains of Borneo and desperate to witness the current state of tropical wildlife conversation.

Through an intensive learning experience, students go behind the scenes of this exquisite location and help preserve its natural environment.

Beaches and Rainforests like no other

Have you ever seen the sparkling waters of Borneo? If not, you should visit places such as the Clearwater Cave in Sarawak’s Gunung Mulu National Park.

Or, if you prefer the calm tides of a picturesque beach, make your way to Hawaii Beach in Miri. Here, you will find a wooden footbridge that leads you to palm-fringed sands and tranquil waves.

When you opt to spend your study semester in East Malaysia, you also choose a wealth study breaks in these beachside settings. Unlike traditional styles of relaxing after lecture, you can de-stress with surfing lessons after hours or hop onto a fishing boat to go and catch your dinner!

There’s never a dull moment in Borneo, especially if you end up in Miri. With an abundance of activities and cultural events to explore, you’ll feel inspired to learn and dominate the next classroom discussion.

World-class education without limits

When choosing which university to dedicate your study semester to, Curtin University Malaysia stands out as a popular option among the international student community.

The ongoing three-week ’Curtin’s Asia Study Tour’ mobility program, for example, allows students to visit Borneo to broaden their perspectives and learn essential skills in dealing with new and diverse environments.

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Source: Curtin University Malaysia

By providing a world-class education free from constraints, here, you’ll receive the same high standard of tuition regardless of the change in location.

There’s also The New Colombo Plan Mobility Program, in which Australian undergraduates can participate in semester-based or short term study, internships, mentorships, practicums and research at Curtin Malaysia.

Or, if you’re intrigued by the prospects of Borneo and wish to merge your passion with this magical experience in East Malaysia, there are also options to undertake full-time undergraduate or postgraduate degrees.

Global graduate employment advantages

Which CV would look better, one with no global experience or one that demonstrates a worldly perspective?

For employers, it will be a professional portfolio that demonstrates adaptability and confidence. By choosing to invest your time in a study abroad semester in Borneo you’ll return home with an extensive range of new skills and an advanced understanding of cross-cultural communication.

As John Lyall discovered in his semester at Curtin University in Miri, “If you are struggling to find a point of difference on the résumé, or just could do with a change of scenery, I would certainly recommend looking at Curtin University’s Malaysia campus.”

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Source: Curtin University Malaysia

Lyall adds, “My whole experience in Miri was overwhelmingly comfortable, it immerses you in an utterly different culture and allows you to step out of your comfort zone while always having the option of stepping back in. Most unit coordinators are in Bentley and the course content is all the same, so the transition process is entirely stress-free!”

Once in a lifetime opportunity

As cliché as it may sound, a study adventure that allows you to dive into the depths of Sarawak’s bright blue waters and stride through Borneo’s incredible rainforests is truly a ‘once in a lifetime’ chance.

Due to the ongoing threats of global warming and the alarming rate of climate change, we must act now to preserve the planet’s natural beauty. If not, your semester in the serene landscapes of Sarawak or other backdrops of Borneo will soon be nothing more than a reminder of what we have lost.

At this point, all that remains are the destructive realities left behind by environmental disasters. Unless there are dramatic improvements to the world’s ecosystem, you will no longer have the pristine beaches and clear waters to walk across or the waterfalls surrounded by mountains to witness.

Make the most of your higher education experience and do something different before it’s too late. By bringing your studies to Curtin University in Borneo, you’ll have some extraordinary memories to take back home…

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