Taking a leap of faith can be terrifying.
From the comfort of a steady job to the unknown challenges of university, it can be frightening to start postgraduate study. The reasons not to are endless: family responsibilities, work, financial concerns… It is all too easy to put off making the decision to go back to university, especially if you’ve already travelled so far on a path that you decided on years ago.
But is that enough?
Entering, or re-entering, university to study a new course can be frightening, but so is the prospect of doing something indefinitely that does not spark joy (thanks, Marie Kondo).
It’s also important to remember that postgraduate study is more than just a new qualification; it’s about upskilling as a professional and being equipped with the right tools to ensure that you’re prepared for any challenges that come your way. It can also be about discovering your passion and finally finding the career of your dreams.
We’ve spoken to a few postgraduate students to discover what inspired them to undertake further study and the reason why they finally took the leap.
I moved into General Practice nursing, and it was here that I began to learn about the burden of chronic disease and its impact on both individuals and the Australian health system as a whole.
As much as I enjoy General Practice, I realised that I wanted to focus and specialise in Type 2 Diabetes, particularly disease prevention. As someone who is passionate about the role of health and fitness in maintaining a great quality of life, I want to educate and assist people to optimise their health through healthy lifestyle choices.
I chose to study at UTS because I wanted to experience a metropolitan university. I wanted to be part of a bigger institution that has an excellent reputation. UTS is also affiliated with one of the larger hospitals in Sydney. During my nursing career, I had mostly worked in smaller hospitals so I wanted to experience a different type of environment.
Coming here and meeting a range of different people who were all in different stages of life, was amazing. We were all coming together because we were all passionate about becoming midwives. It was a great environment, as I was with people who chose to learn and extend their skills.
I lost my job in 2016 due to company restructuring.
It was hard at the time but it was also very good for me, because I finally had time to stop and contemplate the future. I re-evaluated many things and realised I did not want to work in the commercial sector anymore.
I wanted to be passionate about what I do and for me, that meant working on social issues. I chose to study Public Health because I always had interest in social science and health. I could see the potential of Public Health to improve lives of many and I wanted to be part of it.
I left school with the intention of going to university, but work got the better of me. 27 years later, with two teenage children and a husband in tow, I am now a full-time university student for the first time!
As cliché as it sounds, I love health care for what it offers, where it’s going and the potential of where we can take it. Likewise, my absolute passion is fixing existing, or implementing new systems, processes or procedures; seeing that end result is so satisfying!
I was inspired to study Health Services Management because of a colleague of mine. He encouraged me to take the leap, even though I was so concerned with the ‘what ifs’. However, I’m so grateful that I did.
I am an oncology nurse consultant. We are treating a lot more people now, thanks to the introduction of treatments such as chemotherapy and immunotherapy. Because of this, the hospital recognised the need for a nurse practitioner in our department. Nurse practitioner, for me, was always the ultimate nursing goal, but it’s the transition from being a nurse consultant to being autonomous that is both exciting and scary.
Doing a Master of Nurse Practitioner means I can help patients in regional areas to be able to access the same services that they would in a metropolitan area, without having to travel such long distances. We have people who travel over 100 kilometres in a day just for a small injection. It is a huge sacrifice.
So, by training to become a Nurse Practitioner, we can help patients feel like they have the availability of treatment so that they’re not making decisions about treatment options based on the distance that they have to travel.