Service Abroad

Combine your education with an internship and travel

Service Abroad at Curtin is a multi-faceted program which combines internships and service learning with Australian culture, lifestyle and travel. You can tailor your Service Abroad experience with your future career prospects in mind, and gain an invaluable advantage in a competitive employment market.

See what our students say about Curtin

About the program

You devise your own personalised program in collaboration with your home institution and Curtin University. Key features of the program include:


Internships are a great way to develop professional skills while making a positive contribution to the community. Our Student and Community Development Officer will liaise with you to match your internship experience to your personal interests and career ambitions.

You also have the opportunity to enrol in a community service unit which involves a series of open discussions and presentations designed to broaden your knowledge of Australian culture, while allowing you to share your own unique views and experiences with other Study Abroad students.

Service learning

Service learning is an opportunity to become more perceptive, culturally sensitive and well-rounded, and is available to all Service Abroad students. Service learning can take the form of ongoing volunteer placements, one-off projects, or community-based internships with local not-for-profit organisations. You’ll get the most out of your service learning through our complementary structured classroom program, which involves facilitated open discussions and presentations that explore service learning and its relationship with Australian culture.

Tailored orientation

You will have a tailored one-week orientation program that includes:

  • a tour of Perth and Fremantle
  • an introduction to Aboriginal culture
  • exploring and learning about Australian native wildlife
  • a surfing lesson
  • general information sessions about Curtin’s culture, academic standards, support services and everything you need to know about life at Curtin.

Field trips

As part of the Service Abroad program, you will get the opportunity to attend a range of organised field trips to local sites in Western Australia. Students often go surfing in Margaret River, whale watching in Albany, visiting Rottnest Island and wine tasting in the Swan Valley.

Student advisor

You will meet your student advisor when you arrive at Curtin campus. Your student advisor is a senior student or graduate and is there to help you settle into life at Curtin. They will schedule weekly catch up’s with you to discuss both academic and non-academic issues.

Intercultural classes

This experience is designed to give you a holistic understanding of Australian and Asian culture and lifestyle. During these classes you will learn about Australian and Indigenous culture from Indigenous Australians, migrant and refugee groups, social justice service providers and community welfare organisations.


Curtin Volunteers! (CV!) is a student-driven volunteering hub, offering a wide range of volunteering and leadership opportunities across Western Australia. These opportunities include on-going and one-off activities and span a broad range of interests like: culture and communication, remote and Indigenous, health, youth and environment. Volunteering with CV! is a great way to meet new people, gain valuable skills and see more of Western Australia.

Find out more about Curtin Volunteers!

How to apply

If you are a current student at one of the partner institutions listed below please click on the relevant link to apply:

If your education institution is not listed above, please contact us via the details below.

Curtin’s academic calendar

Curtin has 17 weeks per semester, with two semesters per year. Each semester is made up of 12 teaching weeks, two tuition free weeks, one study week and two exam weeks. We encourage you to use your tuition free weeks to explore Australia. The standard teaching periods are semester one (February to June) and semester two (July to November). Some courses are taught on a trimester basis.

For all the important dates like exams, study periods and holidays see the Curtin academic calendar.


During your service abroad, your tuition fees are paid directly to Curtin instead of your home university.

You are also responsible for covering any costs associated with your exchange, including accommodation, living expenses, airfares and other travel expenses, your Australian student visa and compulsory Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC).

Before you leave home

See our pre-departure section to find out what you need to do before you leave.

Contact us

For more information about the Service Abroad program at Curtin, contact the Director of Service Abroad, Julie Howell.

Tel: +61 8 9266 9909