Graduate: Chantal Bradshaw

Chantal Bradshaw with her two daughters
Chantal Bradshaw with her two daughters

My SCU journey began at The Tweed Heads campus in 2007. At that time, I had a one year old daughter and I was looking for some intellectual stimulation as well as a career change away from the variable working hours of resort management.

I had always enjoyed working with young people so I decided to have a go at a teaching degree. I already had a Bachelor of Accountancy so I enrolled in the Graduate Diploma of Education (Secondary) specialising in Human Society and it's Environment (HSIE) with a part-time load.

Having a student teaching placement very early in the degree meant that I could see if I was cut out for the profession before I invested too much time and money. I absolutely loved my first practicum! And it was with a great deal of passion that I undertook the next three years, having another baby along the way.

Over those next years I looked forward to Tuesday and Thursday evenings when I would eagerly abandon motherhood to engage with my peers at our tutorials. My peers came from all walks of life and countries which added greatly to the fun of class. With the knowledge gained in class and by using night-time baby feeds to complete assessment tasks, I was able to maintain a Distinction average.

I have very fond memories of my tutors especially Professor Neville Jennings and my HSIE specialisation coach Mr Peter Wilcox. Our classes revelled in their stories of teaching and we diligently noted all of their advice adding to our "bag of tricks".

So often today, I recall their words of wisdom and passion for their profession. It was Neville Jennings himself who helped to secure my first permanent teaching placement. As referee he received a phone call from my now Principal while he was out bushwalking. Lucky for me he answered his phone and my family and I relocated to the South Coast of NSW where I am a teacher in the HSIE faculty and we are enjoying our rural lifestyle.

Chantal Bradshaw