Video transcript of the Melbourne Writers Festival awards ceremony, featuring International Students and their stories as part of Study Melbourne's My Melbourne competition

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My Melbourne
Stories by Victoria’s international students took centre stage at the 2016 Melbourne Writers Festival.

Karlin Vahos (Colombia) - Winner, English Language Training, Impact English College
It was really a dream that I have since I was very young. I want to go to another country and improve my English and I chose Australia because I think it was a country that has open doors for everybody.

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The competition asked students from around the world to reflect on their experience by creating stories in written and visual form.

Suellen Smosinski (Brazil) - Winner, Vocational Education and Training, Nova Institute of Technology
I was kind of afraid to write in English because before back home I used to write more in my language but when I saw these things I just started to write and it was really - not easy but it was fluent.

Esther Kuok (Malaysia) - Winner, Higher Education, University of Melbourne
From young I’ve just always been interested in reading and then that progressed to writing. It was always sort of a hobby; something on the side for me.

Sandra Frans (Indonesia) - Winner, People’s Choice, The University of Melbourne
I’m so happy! And I know it’s because my friends help me to vote and also I really like that people liked my story as well. It encourages me to write more and more to reflect about my experiences being a student overseas.

Cui ‘Lucky’ Bijun (China) - Winner, Visual (Video) RMIT University
It’s unbelievable! This is the first time I’ve directed by myself. It encouraged me to you know, never give up. Keep on your dream. I will remember this as a treasured memory.

Karlin Vahos (Colombia)
I just want to say thank you to Study Melbourne because this is a big opportunity for us because you can feel that for Study Melbourne we are really important

Esther Kuok (Malaysia)
Back from where I’m from we don’t really have these kind of opportunity to get our stuff published or see our work come to life. I think it’s really good recognition not just for international students but for students in Melbourne.