Murdoch student Nikhil sitting on a couch smiling

Not your typical high school experience

Nikhil Mandalia, 20, Chiropractic Science

A little about me

I was born in Nairobi, Kenya, and spent the first 12 years of my life there. I grew up playing soccer (we call it football) with my friends everywhere – on the streets, in our backyard – and I’m still super passionate about it to this day.

Moving to Australia was a life changing experience. In Kenya we mainly spoke in Gujarati and Swahili so the change in language and the accent was definitely tough for me. I was too shy to speak to anyone in English. At high school in Perth I started to be more confident and develop the Australian accent, however my dad had a rule that I must always speak Gujarati at home so I never forget my mother tongue.

My path to university

I’m passionate about working in sports and helping heal people, so it was a decision between physio, chiro and exercise science. After a tour of Murdoch’s chiropractic clinic I was fascinated, and that helped me choose Chiropractic Science.

Although I did ATAR at school, I had some distractions along the way. In Year 12 I was asked to DJ in Bali a few times, and I was playing the soccer season with my team. I intended to study at uni but at the end of the year my ATAR score was just short.

Luckily, Murdoch has amazing programs for students like me. I completed the OnTrack Sprint program in four weeks and it was honestly the best experience. I met lovely people and tutors whom I still keep in touch with and it enabled me to smoothly transition into university life.

Embracing my passions

I developed a major interest in DJ’ing when I was 15, and in Year 12 I even had the opportunity to DJ in Bali. I’ve kept it up through uni and I actually did a set for Murdoch on Instagram Live. Now that I’m studying at home, I’m taking some time to work on my mixes.

What I’m listening to right now

Untouched by The Veronicas is my favourite song at the moment. Check out my playlist:  

I chose Murdoch University and I’ve never looked back.

What I thought uni would be like

Initially I thought university was going to be like high school, just more difficult. After being at Murdoch for almost three years I have learnt that you’re an individual not a number, and you can be your true self.

Also, I’ve realised the academics are not scary. They are more like your friends whom you can always ask for help and have genuine conversations with.

My life at Murdoch

The people at Murdoch are really cool. Students can have their own unique identity, and everyone respects each other. The social experience is so vibrant, and the Guild do a great job in organising events to get people together.

Murdoch has an amazing campus atmosphere. I experienced this on Open Day, and also during Year 12 when I visited the campus with some of my friends on a normal day. The vibe was awesome, and I felt really comfortable being on campus.

I chose Murdoch University and I’ve never looked back.