What did you study at the undergraduate level and when did you graduate? What are you studying now? Are you studying and working at the same time?
I am an Office Manager in the administration field. I study an undergraduate degree, a Bachelor of Biological Sciences. I am not studying now but I was studying and working.
What have been the most important stages of your life?
From school, I went straight to university. I worked for a little while after completing my degree and then began doing seasonal work which allowed me to live and work in Japan and Greece. I have since returned to Australia but cannot find work with my degree yet.
How did you get to your current (or most recent) job position and how long have you been working there?
I have had this job for over 5 years, it is part of our family business. My degree was not required.
What made you decide to progress with further study?
It was the natural progression from schooling. Not really any particular reason. It made my parents happy and everyone else I knew was going on to further study. It has not yet assisted me to get a position so at the moment I feel like it was a waste of time.
How did you choose your particular further study course (compared to others)? / Were you weighing up any alternative degrees or career pathways before choosing this qualification?
No. I simply enjoyed science throughout school and wanted to continue with a subject I enjoyed. Now that I have my degree, I am hoping to go into coral regeneration on the Great Barrier Reef and have just finished a course outside of secondary education which makes me more qualified for this than my degree.
What was the process to get accepted into your course? What were the prerequisites?
I was accepted via early entry, they looked at my grades before we finished the HSC and anticipated our end marks from this. I was accepted by early entry into two courses and still achieved the mark to gain entry via regular avenues so I would have been accepted either way.
What does your study involve? Can you describe a typical day? (if it’s difficult to describe a typical day, tell us about the last thing you worked on?)
It was a mixture of practical and lectures. The assessments were similar, we were given one to two lectures a week to attend, generally about two hours a week, and a three-hour laboratory class which was compulsory. So, each subject per week had two hours of lectures and three hours of lab a week.
Will this course be beneficial in your career? Where could you or others in your position go from here? Please explain your answer.
I would like to continue to reef regeneration, however, my degree alone does not qualify me for this. I have recently taken on a SCUBA diving course which now gives me the opportunity for FIFO coral reef regeneration work as this is what I am passionate about. So, it was somewhat beneficial, I guess.
What do you love the most about your course?
I loved the practical aspect and the people that I met. The course was long and tedious, but I had fun along the way despite the long hours of studying and the difficult examinations. I enjoy science and always have, but it does not get you far in your career.
What are the limitations of your course?
It is not enough to get you a job in the field. You would be required to continue to a Masters or Doctorate before you are able to get a job. Very few people I studied with got a job from completing their degree and most are not working in the field.
Which three pieces of advice would you give to a current undergraduate student? They don’t necessarily have to be related to your studies, or even to one’s professional life.