Connect with your community through online study

Even with multiple other degrees under her belt, passionate learner Debbie decided to continue her studies online so she could connect with her community and help it thrive.

As a child growing up in South Africa, Debbie remembers feeling frustrated by issues of segregation and discrimination. After moving with her family to Australia at the age of 13, Debbie now has her own loving and tight-knit household to run.

Love of learning

After studying psychology and education earlier in life through more traditional bricks-and-mortar university learning, Debbie decided to enrol into a Murdoch University double degree through Open Universities Australia (OUA). She is now completing a Bachelor of Arts (Community Development) and a Bachelor of Arts (Sustainable Development).

“My motivation is definitely about knowledge, growth and learning, and doing that with other people in a way that’s life affirming, and creates growth for everyone, not just me,” says Debbie.

“It’s been a journey. I’ve been part-time, then gone full-time depending on circumstances. That flexibility has just been fantastic for me as a single parent of three boys.”

A fresh perspective

When raising her boys, Debbie chose home schooling, and is now seeing them growing up to explore their own passions.

“Having home schooled, it’s interesting to have a different take on education, because it hasn’t been so much about an institution, but about embracing opportunities that life has to offer, and exploring what you’re passionate about,” says Debbie.

Not only is Debbie completing her degree, but she is also working as a volunteer on two major projects within her community. She’s very much driven by a strong sense of social justice and desire to connect with those around her.

During her spare time, Debbie loves to garden. “Without gardening I wouldn’t be here – it’s definitely fundamental to my health and wellbeing, and my ability to continue studying,” she says.

There’s no denying Debbie has a bright future ahead of her, and she isn’t planning on slowing down anytime soon. No matter what challenges she may face during her studies, Debbie knows her studies will help her local community.

“I feel confident because of my experience with OUA. I can go out and say I have something of value to offer,” says Debbie.

If you share Debbie’s passion for learning, and you’re looking for a way to get studying online, get in touch with Open Universities Australia here or speak to one of their expert student advisors on 1300 513 044 to find out more.


This article was originally published by our friends at Open Universities Australia.


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