Culture and heritage

Seeking prestige and parkland in Parkville

16 February 2023

As international students flock back to Melbourne, many are attracted to living and studying in Parkville. Hear why two bright stars choose this leafy part of the world above all others.

When international student Ngan Nguyen zoomed in on a map of Parkville from her home in Vietnam, she knew immediately that she wanted to live there.

“I didn’t know about the place before I came here. I chose Parkville because there is an abundance of parks and green space. And it was convenient, near the city,” Ngan said.

“In Parkville I have harmony between urban living and being in nature. The large amount of outdoor space is convenient for an outdoor enthusiast like me.”

She moved to Parkville from Ho Chi Minh City six months ago, to put the finishing touches on a Master of International Business at nearby RMIT University.

“Another advantage of Parkville is the reasonable cost of rent,” Ngan said.

From the rooftop of her student accommodation near Princes Park, Ngan can look out over Royal Park and the skyline.

She runs or walks through Princes Park most mornings, loves the zoo and is transfixed by the change of seasons. When she’s not studying, she meets friends for a picnic.

A historical sandstone building with an internal courtyard, archways and portico.
Ngan Nguyen at the Melbourne Zoo in Parkville

As a new My Melbourne Student Ambassador, Ngan recently fostered the exchange of culture between international students and the broader community.

“International students bring their own culture, enrich the community and promote understanding of other parts of the world.”

“We can foster a culture of change. Build a stronger and vibrant community here,” Ngan said.

International students are an important part of our economy.

After a pandemic-induced hiatus, Melbourne is welcoming international students back to workplaces, lecture theatres, residential colleges and apartments, parks, restaurants and bars across the city.

And a recent change of policy in China also means that thousands of Chinese students are hurrying back to Melbourne to resume face-to-face classes.

Sport brings us together

To help new and returning international students feel at home in Melbourne over the next couple of months, international student Brian Su is teaming up with the North Melbourne Football Club.

“Sport is a very good way to get people from different backgrounds together,” Brian said.

Through his role as a My Melbourne Student Ambassador, he will encourage fellow international students to sample the local game, meet footy legends and make friends.

A competitive student athlete in his home city of Nanjing in China, Brian knows that sport brings people together.

He was quick to join a local running club when he arrived in Melbourne a year ago to complete his Master of Information Systems.

A person jumping over a hurdle.
Brian Su at Rawlinson Track in Parkville

“I really like meeting people from different cultures and backgrounds. I like talking to people. I try to find two strangers to talk to every day.”

He also found new friends through the Ultimate Frisbee crowd in Princes Park.

Brian only applied to study at one university. He set his heart on the Parkville campus of the University of Melbourne after researching online.

“University of Melbourne is the top university. I just wanted to go there. And Parkville has so many parks,” Brian said.

“If you’re living and studying in Parkville, it’s the middle of the city but has natural scenery. It’s close to the city on the tram. And it’s so close to Little Italy in Carlton.”

A neighbourhood Future Melbourne Committee meeting was held in Parkville on Tuesday 21 February 2023. Watch it on demand. And get to know the area through the Parkville Neighbourhood Portal.

University of Melbourne

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