ERATH COUNTY (June 15, 2017) – Last month 2015 Huckabay High School graduate and 2016 Ranger College graduate Ky Bray spent a week broadening his horizons – in Australia.
Bray traveled with the International Scholar Laureate Program and spent seven days touring the country, learning about business and meeting and networking with business people in a variety of fields.
“I thought it would be cool to go to learn about the business that is down there and how they deal with everything because they are such a completely isolated country and continent,” Bray said. “So they have to deal with things that other people probably don’t, like how to bring in resources or things of that nature.”
While in Australia, Bray and his group of about 88 students traveled to Melbourne, Sydney and Cairns. Bray heard from different business leaders every day, competed in a group project–his team won– and met with the general managers of several different companies.
“We got to visit the 3M, which is an international company,” Bray said. “We met with some sales experts and the general manager at the Taronga Zoo. She talked [to the group] about the business side of the zoo.”
While in each town, the group visited places like Phillip Island, Melbourne’s Chinatown, Sydney’s Opera House and the Taronga Zoo. Bray also snorkeled in the Great Barrier Reef, saw the Vivid Sydney light festival and went sky diving.
“That was fun,” Bray said. “You jump out of an airplane with this Aussie guy strapped to your back, and you are 14,000 feet in the air. You fall for a little over 60 seconds, so it’s quite a rush. Most fun thing I’ve ever done.”
Bray traveled internationally for the first time on this trip. He said that people knew “right away” that he was from Texas because of his accent.
“It was nice that [the Australians] spoke English for my first international trip since I’m not bilingual,” Bray said. “There are small differences [between Australia and the United States]. You have to flip on a switch to turn on the power outlet. Even in the airports all of the outlets are like that.”
For Bray, the best part of the trip was not the sightseeing or the extreme sports; it was meeting people from Australia and around the world. Bray described the Australians as “tightly knit” and that the places he visited had a “great atmosphere.”
“Everybody was really open minded,” Bray said. “You could immediately start talking to somebody. Everybody was there for the same reason and they wanted to get better and help you get better. It’s an eye opening experience.”
Bray will begin attending Tarleton State University this fall as an English major. He hopes to be able to continue traveling around the world because he enjoyed visiting Australia so much.
“I recommend anybody that gets the opportunity to go to Australia or to go with the ISLT program,” Bray said. “It’s an amazing trip.”