How further study helped Natalie start her own business

Have you ever had one of those days at work where you just think, “I wish I was my own boss”? Do you wonder what it would be like to work for yourself, without answering to someone else? For Natalie, it was this curiosity and desire that led her to enrol in further study through Open Universities Australia (OUA) – and she’s never looked back!

Natalie decided to study through OUA because of a couple of key points. Not only did she want to fill the knowledge gaps she was missing in order to become a self-employed tax agent, but she also needed a flexible study option that would suit her busy lifestyle. With a busy work life, family commitments at home, and a fairly remote home location, Natalie found that enrolling in online study at a university through OUA meant she didn’t have to sacrifice her existing commitments or lifestyle.

Filling the gaps

When Natalie knew there were knowledge gaps she needed to fill to become a tax agent, she started studying single subjects in Taxation and Commercial Law from Curtin University, through OUA.

Natalie ended up loving the experience of online study so much; it helped motivate her to continue her studies. With that, she enrolled in a Master of Professional Accounting at RMIT as the perfect way to round off her education.

Although she had plenty of years of industry experience, Natalie found herself learning more than she could have expected.

“You can be shown what to do, but you don’t necessarily understand why you’re doing it that way,” says Natalie. Through further study, she’s learnt the theory and given herself a deeper understanding of her work.

Flexible learning

As a mother of two teens, and the owner of an adorable furry feline, being able to study from home was ideal for Natalie. Despite technically being alone at her desk, Natalie says that it didn’t feel like solo study. Even with her own focus and self-motivation, classmates were constantly supporting each other through discussion boards, email and apps like Whatsapp and Skype.

“Even though I was on my own, I never felt particularly isolated,” says Natalie.

With her Masters now under her belt, Natalie loves the life she’s created. “I’m not answerable to anyone else, other than my clients, and I love my life and what I do.”

What more could you want?

If Natalie’s story has inspired you, and you want to find the right degree to help take your career in the right direction, get in touch with Open Universities Australia here or speak to one of their expert student advisors on 1300 513 044


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

Australian Pensioners Insurance Agency Pty Limited ABN 14 099 650 996 is an authorised representative of AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807, the product issuer. Limits, exclusions and conditions apply. Read the Product Disclosure Statement before buying this insurance. Go to for a copy. The Target Market Determination is also available. This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.

The information is intended to be of general nature only. Subject to any rights you may have under any law, we do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss or damage, including loss of business or profits or any other indirect loss, incurred as a result of reliance upon the information. Please make your own enquiries.


Never miss an update from Apia Good Life – subscribe today for inspiration, stories and offers to keep living life at its best. It's free!


Thinking about studying online? Apia Good Life and Open Universities Australia have teamed up to bring you some great benefits!