Five Griffith University students have been chosen to join a 16-member group of 2021 Gold Coast Mayor’s Student Ambassadors.
The ambassador program is offered each year to a select group of international and local Gold Coast students and includes the opportunity to lead and facilitate activities across the city.
Nikol Slynkova is in her third year of a Bachelor of Science, majoring in marine biology and already volunteers in several capacities for Griffith.
“It’s a good feeling to return something back to the community,” she said.
“I would like to share my Australian journey and get to know all these incredible ambassadors from several different educational institutions.
“I am from Prague, Czech Republic and I’ve found the Gold Coast to be a place where people are very open-minded, easy-going and very welcoming to different cultures.
“For now, this is my last year studying, but I am considering honours as well, to do research on sharks or Orcas in the future.”
Like Nikol, Delhi born international student Naveen Makker is excited to represent Griffith and the Gold Coast as a Mayor’s Student Ambassador, hoping it will help him to grow personally and professionally.
“I feel the year ahead will bring excitement, experiences, built good memories, and friends for life,” he explained.
“I will be able to serve the community, get to know students and individuals, to learn from them and be positive and inspired.”
The second year Master of Marketing/ Master of International Tourism and Hospitality Management should graduate at the end of the year.
“I’d like to be a Marketing Manager or customer service officer for brands like Study Gold Coast, Gold Coast Student Hub, City Gold Coast, Gold Coast Airport, Apple, Office Works and EB games.”
“These students play a key role in diversifying both our culture and economy,” Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said of the new ambassadors.
“Those who join the program from overseas become champions for our city as they promote their experiences through their networks across the globe.
“In these challenging times those networks are more important than ever.”
Highlights from this year’s program include extensive tours of the city’s key infrastructure, including Gold Coast Airport; taking part in a SeaWorld marine rescue operation; an indigenous experience through the Jellurgal Aboriginal Cultural Centre; and an exclusive leadership session with the Mayor.
Mikhail Eremeev came to the Gold Coast from Moscow, Russia last year and fell in love with his new city.
“When I applied (to be a student ambassador), I wanted to try and challenge myself with something new,” he said.
“I am passionate about being a good example for others, I get many messages from my friends and strangers in Russia saying I motivate them by my achievements.”
Mikhail hopes to complete a Master of International Tourism and Hospitality Management in 2022.
Final year Bachelor of Computer Science student Sushant Karki, originally from Nepal, is keeping himself busy, already doing an internship with a Gold Coast company as well as his studies and now, his new student ambassador role.
“After my studies, I plan to complete at least one professional year in my field to gain credibility,” he said.
“Depending on job prospects, I will decide where to move as countries like China, India and the U.S have a lot of growth potential in Data Science.
“Australia has also seen growth in Data Science. I will have my eyes out for any opportunities.
“In the Technical field, one must adapt and change with time (so) I would not rule out the possibility of me finding a suitable position here.”
Sujin Kim hopes to finish her PhD in Psychology with Griffith next year and says her time on the Gold Coast, even during the pandemic, has been enjoyable.
“I come from Seoul which is the capital city of South Korea and is hustle and bustle,” she explained.
“Seoul is surrounded by a concrete jungle, and it usually takes approximately 1 hour from home to university or workplace using public transport (whereas) the Gold Coast has a more relaxing and chilled atmosphere. I go to university just within 10 minutes by tram, which is convenient and not crowded.
“I am excited to meet new people and broaden my networking via this program.
“The Gold Coast has amazing and fabulous natural scenery and living and studying here has been a blessing.”
“This is such an incredible launching pad for our students as we help them to realise their potential while creating opportunities and friendships that will carry them forward throughout their lifetimes,” Study Gold Coast CEO Alfred Slogrove said.
This year’s crop of 16 students are from 11 different nationalities and represent eight different Gold Coast education and training providers.