CORINE Travaglini has only lived in Australia for seven years, but has already resided in more places than many people would in a lifetime.
The exercise physiologist, 30, completed the third year of her degree in Brisbane at the University of Queensland before returning to her native Canada to finish her studies and work for two years.
But Australia called her back. Since 2011 she has lived in Wollongong, Byron Bay, Adelaide, Lennox Head, Melbourne and Geelong.
“Newcastle has been the first place I’ve come to and thought ‘I can spend my whole life in this place’,” Ms Travaglini said.
“I swim in the baths and think ‘This can’t be real, I can’t believe this town. Why didn’t I find it earlier in life?’
“It’s also been the easiest place to meet new friends who make you feel like you belong.”
Ms Travaglini said becoming an Australian meant a “new beginning and a new season” of her life “and I’m really excited for what that will bring”.
Her colleague gifted her with an Australian flag ahead of her citizenship ceremony, which she wore as a cape to receive her certificate and then waved behind her as she ran along the stage.
“I never quite made it to the Olympics but always thought it would be great to win a gold medal and get to wear a flag,” she said.
“Citizenship of another country is an achievement and quite a privilege.
“I just wanted to show how good I’ve been feeling lately.”
Ms Travaglini even considered yelling ‘Aussie, Aussie, Aussie’.
“But I felt really good just running across the stage – I felt a sense of freedom.”
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