International Student Officer

Ngoc Lan (Laura) Tran 



Name: Ngoc Lan Tran          

Preferred Name: Laura

Degree and year of study: 3rd year of Bachelor of Social Sciences, major in Sociology

What inspired you to engage with the office and role(s) you currently hold:

As an international student, I understand intimately the problems that we face with studies and life in general. Because of this, I have endeavored to volunteer and support students to reach and fulfill their potential. I started volunteering for International Student Support in 2018, welcoming students in o-week and supporting them through multiple socialising and cultural events. However, I believe a can contribute more substantially to the international students' community as a reasonable, strong and assertive representative voice. Having listened to your concerns during these volunteer events, I aim to address those concerns and work proactively to achieve the best possible student experience at Adelaide University.

What Clubs are you involved with at UofA?

I am a dedicated member of the Adelaide Vietnamese Students Association and the Adelaide University Filipino Club.

What led you to join the club(s)?

As a Vietnamese international student wanting to adjust and assimilate to life at the city of Adelaide and Adelaide University, joining the Vietnamese students association was crucial to me. I found a lot of friends and connections during the club’s many social events and learned many insights when it comes to living in this new city. I also got a chance to showcase my own cultural identity through the club’s larger events such as Vietfest. I joined the Filipino club not only because I adore its food, culture and its friendly people, but also because I have a lot of close friends who are committee members of the club at the time. 

Favourite holiday destination/activity?

My favourite holiday is the Lunar New Year, or as Vietnamese people call it, T?t Nguyên Ðán. It is a traditional holiday in Vietnam that has been celebrated for thousands of years and holds a great cultural and spiritual value to our people. Because I get to visit and catch up with my family, reflect on the things I have achieved during the previous year and wish for good luck with them, it’s a holiday I just love wholeheartedly.

Favourite place to study on campus?

My favourite spot is the Reading Room in the Barr Smith Library. Not only do I adore the library, but this particular place possesses a history and beauty to it, as well as a calm eery quietness that is perfect for essay writing and exams revision.

What do you hope to achieve in your office and role(s) in 2020?

My main goal is to listen to the concerns and issues international students have expressed and voiced and directly address those. Addressing issues that can interfere with our wellbeing such as scams, accommodation to academic studies are within my scope of achievement. At the time, I hope to improve international students’ experience with gaining placements or internships in Adelaide, especially if this is a compulsory part of certain degrees. I also look forward to contributing to the Multicultural Fair in Semester 1 and hope to help students find their cultural club just as I have found mine.

What advice would you give to students starting at the University of Adelaide?

I understand how living in a new city, a new country, and speaking a different language is incredibly daunting tasks, but it is important to keep a positive outlook and a proactive stance during your time here. Your university experience is what you want it to be. If you want to have fun: join a club (or several); if you want to develop personally, consider volunteering; if you want professional experience, start looking for opportunities as soon as possible and apply. My experience at Adelaide Uni has been especially meaningful because I have achieved 2 out of those 3, I hope you would aspire to do the same!