Lancaster – Ohio University Lancaster | Pickerington Student Nick Ramsey is back stateside. The Middle Childhood Education major from Pickerington recently returned from Perth, Australia. Ramsey spent fall semester in Australia student teaching.
"Initially, when I landed in California, it was alright to be back because it was still nice and sunny out," said Ramsey. "But when I got to Ohio, the cold was terrible. The weather in Australia was beautiful. Every day it was 70 or 80 degrees."
Ramsey was the first regional campus student at Ohio University to be selected to participate in the Consortium for Overseas Student Teaching or COST. Ramsey taught science classes in Australia. The program allowed Ramsey to fulfill professional internship requirements while living abroad and student teaching for an extended period.
"They threw me into the fire when I got there," said Ramsey. "I observed for maybe two days and then they said, 'Here's your class.'"
Ramsey taught students in grades 8, 9 and 10. He said he learned a lot from the students about Australian culture. But after students had him try a vegemite sandwich, he quickly learned that he did not enjoy the Australian spread made from used brewer's yeast.
"Vegemite is not good. It's very salty," said Ramsey. "My host mom would stock up on it, and I would tell her that I did not really need that."
Vegemite wasn't the only new thing Ramsey tried while in Australia; he also tried surfing for the first time and loved it.
Ramsey said his students also learned a thing or two from him about being an American. They asked him to speak for long periods of time in class because they liked to hear his accent.
Now that Ramsey is home, he's starting to line up job interviews. Student teaching was the last thing Ramsey had to do to get his degree, but Ramsey's not sure he wants to get a job in the United States.
"I'd really like to get back in the classroom as soon as possible," said Ramsey. "I was thinking maybe about going back to Australia. I've looked at the visa requirements and the process I would have to go through to teach there."
Ramsey wrote a bi-weekly blog about his experience in Australia for the Ohio University Lancaster | Pickerington website. He hopes students were inspired by his experience enough to try it.
"I hope we get more students out there because our students have a lot to offer," said Ramsey. "I think it would be so cool if we could get more students involved in study abroad."