Nizua Inas Alysha Binti Mohd Nizuaisham (Alysha) details her experience as an international student at RMIT.
Hi I’m Nizua Inas Alysha Binti Mohd Nizuaisham, but everyone calls me Alysha. I’m from Malaysia, so Alysha from Malaysia! I am currently studying a Bachelor of Design (Games).
Why did you choose to study game design?
When I was a child, I was obsessed with art, and especially 3D art. I would always be looking for videos or instructions for how to make it. I was really passionate about it, but I never thought I could study it or make a career out of it!
I first studied mechatronics, but realised it wasn’t actually what I wanted to do.
Then, when I was about 21, a friend told me about a free games course that Harvard was offering online. I really loved it and realised I can use my creative and programming skills, and so from then on, I put all my energy into becoming a games student.
I’m so excited to be studying this field. I can see the potential for game design to be about more than just the game industry.
My ultimate dream is to change the way we study in classes – now it’s “teachers teach and students sit at their desk and learn.” Meanwhile, we have AI and other technologies that can help create more active participation from students in classes. I think it could be especially useful for students who are neurodivergent.
Why did you choose to study at RMIT?
Because I’m on a scholarship through the Malaysian government (the MARA Scholarship), I had to choose the top-ranking universities across the world. RMIT is well known for its design courses; I think it’s ranked number one in the southern hemisphere. After doing more extensive research on RMIT, I’m so thankful I chose to study here.
What interested you about studying in Melbourne?
Melbourne helped inform my decision to come study here with RMIT. During my research I found that Melbourne is a great city for international students; it’s very friendly and very multicultural. I was also surprised (but happy) to discover that there’s a lot of halal food here!
What are you excited to do now you’re here?
I’m really looking forward to going skiing; it looks so interesting.
As we all know, Malaysia is very humid and dry – there's definitely no snow, so I’ve never been able to ski before!
So far Melbourne has been very, very welcoming and RMIT itself has been very welcoming of new students. Especially international students coming in – they've provided a lot of support.
Have you felt supported by RMIT?
I really like the emails the University sends me about what events are going on at RMIT. It’s a helpful way to know what events and activities are happening at all the campuses, which I find amazing.
Also, last year during the Coronavirus pandemic, my lecturers created a Discord group for students so we could all connect no matter where we were studying and through that we all formed a tight connection.
So even though I was in Malaysia, having that Discord made me really close with people here. When I arrived in Melbourne, some of my friends that I made through that Discord channel came and picked me up at the airport. I felt extremely welcomed because there were people here ready to welcome me and help me transition from Malaysia to Australia.
Do you have any tips for other students planning on coming to Melbourne for studies?
Firstly, if you’re accustomed to having a bidet in your home, bring a portable bidet with you to Melbourne as they don’t have them here!
I would also say, if you know when you’re arriving - like you’ve got a flight booked - start looking for accommodation before you leave.
There are a lot of options - I sifted through about 800 accommodation options - and it can take time to search, evaluate and apply for all of them.
I put them all in a spreadsheet and segmented by address, how much the rent was and what they provided. This makes it easy to compare all the options.
So, my hot tip – spreadsheets are very sexy option for helping you find accommodation!
Also, try to find somewhere close to your campus, and if your campus is in the City, find somewhere near the free tram zone stops. It helps with navigating the city.
Acknowledgement of Country
RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.