Tuesday, 22 May 2012

On making changes and being a First Year student the second time round

When asked why he stuck out three whole years doing a Town Planning degree that he didn’t enjoy, Christian puts the question back to us. Plain and simple, we can all be afraid of change. Admitting we are not happy doing what we are doing and taking the step of altering our direction isn’t easy and Christian admits it was about finally plucking up the courage to say, actually I will decide what I want to do and I want to start writing.

Changing to a degree in English and Philosophy in the middle of the year and at a new uni put Christian in the interesting position of being a First Year student all over again, but this time he wasn’t a School Leaver and having more experience and confidence meant he felt more comfortable in classes.

Recognising that he didn’t want to keep going in the direction he was going was the first step. Realising he would rather study something creative and something that challenged him on “how to think, not what to think” was the deal breaker that lead him to finally make the switch to English.

His advice?

Christian's Pathway

Find what you love and just do it!

It’s never too late to start doing what you love. Sometimes figuring out what it is you really want to do can take time. You go off on tangents, explore different options and then all of a sudden you run into something that makes your world tick and you just know that this is what you need to do.

During the eight years that she was working with the Navy, Gina was always thinking about how she could combine the things that she loved and make them her career. 

Her love for the ocean kept her in places where she was working close by the sea, whether it was in submarines with the Navy or teaching Aqua Culture at Tafe, but her passion also came through in her hobbies:

After she finished her travels, Gina started Renewable Energy Engineering during the MidYear intake. While combining fulltime work with part time study has its challenging moments, for Gina it’s about always doing what interests you and not sticking with something that you don’t enjoy: 

How Gina Explored

Read the course handbook to find out about possible courses she could do.

Volunteered in Aqua Culture at Challenger Tafe in Fremantle.
Completed a diploma in Engineering to get more skills.

Explored study options  in Renewable Energy online.
Chatted to family and friends to get different points of view.

Took time out to travel around Australia and visit the Ports to think about what she really wanted to do.

Gina's Pathway

It’s ok, you are allowed to change your mind

When he first came to uni, Jack Dawes picked what he thought was the right degree for him, Media with Screen and Sound at Murdoch. 

A semester in and he could tell it wasn't for him. It wasn't what he thought it would be and he just wasn't enjoying it. 

So he packed his bags and went on a uni exchange to Canada.

Jack says it wasn't hard to make the decision to change courses because he knew that he wanted to finish uni and now he felt like he had some more direction. 

Jack says it is really, really hard to choose what you want to do and even though he thought he was picking the right course the first time around, it still took him a few tweaks and changes along the way before he figured out a pathway that he felt good on. His advice is simply not to be afraid to make a choice and then it turns out to be the wrong thing.

His philosophy has always been to choose things he was interested in and just go for it, but he knows too that a lot of people just really have no idea what they want to do.

He also thinks it can be good to choose a 'general' degree if you aren't sure, like art, commerce or law. Something that isn't terribly specific because at the end of the degree you have had three extra years to think about what you want to do and you might have a better idea and then you can add something more specific to your degree or you can go out and get work in any number of fields.  

How Jack Explored

By attending Murdoch's Media Frenzy in year 10.

Spoke to friends who were doing law and who had graduated from law to get an idea of what they are up to now.
Came into the uni to chat with advisors.

Searched for course info online.
Went on exchange to get a new perspective.

Worked full-time in retail to think about what he really wanted to do.

Jack's Pathway

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Turning what you love into your career

Think of something you enjoy doing. Have you considered this as a possible career path?

David Sheehy did, and now he's at Murdoch studying Games Art and Design.

Prompted by a YouTube series called Extra Credit, which focuses on the Games Design industry, David started to consider his interest in gaming as more than just a spare time hobby.

To help him choose his area of study, David wanted to find out more about the industry and what kind of career he could have after studying this course at uni.

This meant lots of asking, talking and listening.

David spoke to people in the industry and found it helped a lot to hear the opinions of someone who had been working in the Gaming industry for ages. When he was 15 he was lucky enough to get an insiders sneak peak into places like WETA in New Zealand and the Eve Headquarters in Iceland, which gave him an impression of what it would be like to work in places like these after he graduated.

He also attended course career days and exhibitions and spoke to lecturers and met people who helped him confirm his decision.

By listening, asking and exploring the industry and being open to other ideas, you could find yourself somewhere unexpected but equally rewarding. David suggests not ignoring the wider options that are available, be open to different avenues and not just the places you initially think of.

David strongly believes that finding the course that's right for you is about figuring out what you enjoy:

How David Explored

By attending Murdoch's Open Your Mind Day and speaking to lecturers.
By talking to people in the industry.
By attending career expos and talking to reps from each uni and Tafe to see what they offered in Games Art.
By visiting the uni to get a feel for the campus.
By watching and reading things online to get a feel for the industry.

David's Pathway to Murdoch Uni