Originally from Pune in the western Indian state of Maharashtra, Shreya moved to the Gold Coast to study in 2019. She graduated from Griffith in 2021 with a double master’s degree (Master of Marketing/Master of International Tourism and Hospitality Management), and now works as head of digital for marketing company Floodgate, based in Surfers Paradise on the Coast.

Q. What led you to choose Griffith University on the Gold Coast?

I got accepted into two universities in Switzerland, three in Australia and one in the UK, but ultimately chose the Gold Coast for the weather and lifestyle. I chose Griffith University because I was looking for a course which allowed me to specialise in both the things I wanted to study – marketing and tourism – and Griffith is one of the few universities around the world that offer those degrees together.

Q. Did the Gold Coast meet your expectations?

Yes, it was exactly like I expected. Amazing beaches, lovely people, great restaurants, so many hiking spots. I absolutely love it here.

Q. Can you tell us a little about your experience of studying on the Gold Coast and the opportunities it offered?

Due to Covid-19, I didn’t get a chance to experience all of the university clubs I would have loved to have been part of; but online studying taught me how to manage my time better. I learnt how to effectively communicate with group members from various parts of the world and other soft skills which I would not have gained otherwise. The Gold Coast is smaller than metro cities such as Sydney or Melbourne, so it is much easier to network and to find like-minded people who have similar interests and to find good mentors. It also has a booming hospitality sector which helped me learn a lot about tourism, events and hospitality.

Q. In 2020, you were part of the (Gold Coast City) Mayor’s Student Ambassador (MSA) Program. What did it involve?

I applied to the MSA 2020 program to meet new people and experience the city in a different way than I normally would. It was a great experience and I am proud to say that I am still in touch with a number of people I met through the program. It involved travelling throughout the city while experiencing exclusive events that happen in and around the Gold Coast and then posting about it on our social media to showcase how amazing the city is.

Q. Can you give us a quick insight into your work at Floodgate?

I started working as a marketing specialist at Floodgate and have now moved on to work as the Head of Digital. When I started, it was a team of three which has now grown to a team of seven and I’m managing three of those people. I get to work on strategy as well as implementing advertising campaigns online and that’s very exciting.

Q. How did studying on the Gold Coast shape your life in a personal way?

Studying here has made me more independent and capable of doing things on my own. I have made friends that I know will last me a lifetime. I am still in touch with my manager from my first internship from more than two years ago.

Q. What favourite memory springs to mind when you recall your student days?

It would have to be when my friends and I went to the Currumbin Rock Pools. It’s one of my favourite places and I try to visit every few months. Another great memory is going to restaurants and trying new food and cuisine. I wasn’t as well versed with many Asian cuisines such as Thai or Japanese cuisine as I am now.

Q. What would you say to someone who is unsure about studying on the Gold Coast?

Just come here. Everything will work out. There are amazing schools, colleges, universities, a multicultural community and some of the best beaches in the world. What’s not to like?