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Student Michelle Takes a Step in a New Direction

Michelle worked as a paediatric nurse for 15 years before deciding to take the leap and follow her passion, teaching.

Having worked as a nurse running health education classes in schools, Michelle knew she loved being in a classroom environment and wanted to create longer-term relationships with the kids.

“After taking a career break to raise my twin boys, and with the support of my husband, I thought, ‘it’s now or never’. If I had gone back to nursing, I don’t think I would have ever found an opportunity to follow this path into teaching that I’ve now taken” Michelle says.

As a mother of two living in the country, without access to after-school care and with a sick mother-in-law, Michelle needed a course that would fit around her busy life.

“Swinburne has been incredibly flexible in the number of units I take on, in allowing me to defer altogether in term one this year when issues with my mother-in-law reached crisis point, and in supporting me to make the best decisions for my future career,” says Michelle.

Learning new skills through online study

Juggling so many demands has taught Michelle to stay organised and self-motivated. Ensuring that she makes time to complete her weekly readings and discussions has kept her on track and connected to her learning group and eLearning Advisor (ELA). Her online course has also taught her to become more tech-savvy.

“Having the course purely online has meant I’ve had a huge learning curve with regards to technology, but it’s all been worth it and will make me a better teacher (who is) able to better cater to the learning demands of my students,” Michelle explains.

Virtual classroom, real friendships

Some may think that studying online means studying alone, however Michelle has loved getting to know her online cohort throughout her course.

“I can’t believe how many people I’ve ‘met’ studying this way, and while I’ve not met them in person, I consider some to be great friends and colleagues.  They are a great resource and support during study, and I think we’ll continue to support each other as beginning practitioners as well,” says Michelle.