The joys of student exchange - by Lalo Green

Generally, when we think about an academic exchange in architecture school we picture ourselves in Italy, The United Kingdom, or somewhere in Europe, places we have studied and know from books and pictures. Tasmania, anyhow, is a whole other story! It has been an awesome surprise for the whole time I have been here - which is just a couple of months. What I like about Launceston and studying here is that it is very close to all sorts of activities, from a day-trip hiking to an exciting night out with my friends. I can enjoy being in Australia without necessarily living in the hassle of a huge city, but still having the chance to visit the places that this part of the world has to offer. Every time I find a new hidden place in Launceston it is a delight to see that it has its own ambient, and it is almost as if the city unfolds slowly for me to discover little by little.

I am still amazed at the quality of the produce in this place! It is always very satisfying to go buy fruits and veggies and know they were grown by local producers, without added weird chemicals or any genetic modifications. Buying my food, cooking and eating are some of my favourite things to do here thanks to all that care that I have seen that Tasmanians put in their work.

Living on campus is amazing! I have met people from more countries than ever before. One of the good things about it is that I keep learning every second with every conversation I have with people from Malaysia, Norway, Malawi and even people from my own country! It is amazing how many places of the world come together in one single spot.

What I find exciting about this place is that it is evident that there is a big effort from the student population and young art and design producers to push Launceston into being a hub for fine design production in Australia. I am really looking forward to coming back in a few years and seeing all the good things that are yet to come for this amazing place. I am really excited to say now that I have studied in a place that has so much potential and is so diverse I couldnʼt have possibly asked for something different.

Lalo is from Mexico and studying at the University of Tasmania in the School of Archirecture and Design on student exchange.

Image: Lake St Clair, 3 hour drive from Launceston