Ligia’s study abroad experience in Australia

Ligia’s study abroad experience in Australia

Working and studying

“My first work experience was in my college in Brazil as they have a junior consultancy company. It’s a real organisation, with real clients and they offer marketing and business consultancy for small, medium and large companies. At 19, it was my first experience of working in business and I still use examples of that experience in interviews and work situations now. That was 10 years ago, so I can say that I have 10 years’ experience now!

“The degree was four years and it was great – great college, great subjects. I met my actual husband there and my lifetime friends as well. I learned how marketing, communications and advertising worked in the real world and in a real corporate environment. It didn’t change my mind about what I wanted to do. When I decide something about my life, I usually stick to it. Of course, I had some romantic ideas about the course and what work-life would be like, which have become more realistic, but I don’t think I have changed over the bigger issues.

“Halfway through the course, I had an internship. In Brazil, we have paid internships which are mandatory to finish the bachelors. So I went straight into working at Novartis as a marketing intern and for my last year and a half at college I was working and studying at the same time. I graduated when I was 21 and I was promoted to a full-time contract at Novartis as a marketing analyst. From there, I went through a few different departments within the company and ended up staying for a total of almost five years.”

airport - leaving for study in australia
Leaving for Australia

So why study in Australia?

It was evident that this period of Ligia’s life prepared her for the vigours of her time abroad. She was working full-time as an intern at Novartis from 9am to 6pm, and then going into college to complete her degree. Once she had finished her degree, she had a good job and a good life, but rather than settling for that she relished the challenges ahead. 

“In 2014, I decided that I wanted to live abroad for a period of time. I think I wanted the experience of living by myself and being independent. Because I was living with my parents, I had everything I needed. It’s hard to explain. I needed something different. To see what the world was like outside my bubble, my shelter. Because I am so attached to my family it was hard, but I needed something just for me, to push myself. And of course, the chance to live in a first-world country, improve my English and gain some work experience internationally.

“So my first desire was to get outside of my comfort zone and have the experience of living by myself in a different country, with a different culture, with different people. To be somewhere and not know anyone else and live an international student life – which is very, very challenging. This was my first thought, but after the first year, after settling, everything changed.”

Find out more about Ligia’s MBA at Western Sydney University.

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