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Gold Coast to Gangnam: Chloe set to gain new insights with the New Colombo Plan

New Colombo Plan (NCP) Scholar Chloe Burns is looking forward to making the most of a once in a lifetime opportunity in the Republic of Korea, embracing a new environment and culture, and gaining valuable knowledge from the Indo-Pacific.

In February, Chloe arrived in snowy Seoul, a welcome change for the Bond University student who is used to the warmer temperate of Australia’s Gold Coast.

“Coming from the sunny Gold Coast, snow is not a regular occurrence for me so that was an amazing experience”.

Chloe’s first impression of Seoul has been a welcoming city that is full of life and culture.

“Every Korean person I have encountered has been lovely, which has made my adjustment process a lot smoother.”

Getting out and about in the colder weather, Chloe has already had the chance to visit the World Peace Gate at Seoul Olympic Park and the famous Gangnam district, enjoying the complete K-Pop experience.

Person standing in front of large sculptural entrance and Olympic rings logo
Chloe at the World Peace Gate at Seoul Olympic Park. Image credit to Chloe Burns.

Interested in international relations, Chloe will complete a semester at Yonsei University studying a broad range of topics including North-East Asia international security, the role and effects political parties have in modern democracies, and the interaction between gender and socio-cultural and policy issues.

Chloe will use these insights to pursue a career in the world of foreign affairs, government and policy, defence, sustainable development and humanitarian issues.

To gain first-hand experience, she plans to undertake an internship with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Seoul Policy Centre.

Chloe is ready to make the most of every moment of her scholarship journey, including forming meaningful connections in the Indo-Pacific and expanding her knowledge of the region.

“The Indo-Pacific has such a significant influence both on a global scale and in Australia, where our country continues to gain insight from the region in strategic, political, cultural, and economic aspects.”

Completing Indo-Pacific related courses at her home university and keeping up to date with the latest news from the region hasallowed Chloe to remain positive and hopeful while travel was restricted.

For Scholars set to recommence their program, Chloe notes the importance of staying organised, making preparations for when you arrive, and reaching out to your case manager and Australia’s diplomatic mission in your host country for guidance.

She reminds her fellow Scholars to take it all in, remembering that your scholarship is an amazing opportunity to experience all that your host location has to offer.

For Chloe, this includes learning  the history and culture of each place she visits. Come spring when the weather warms and cherry blossoms begin to bloom, she is excited to visit Gyeongbokgung Palace, hike in Bukhansan National Park and take it easy at the Lotte World amusement park.

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