Graduate: Missy Simpson

Missy Simpson
Missy Simpson

I enrolled at SCU's Tweed Heads campus to obtain my Graduate Diploma of Education and become a certified Intermediate/Senior Society and Culture, and Geography teacher in February 2007.

To be honest, categorizing my memories in order to narrow them down to my 'best' is absolutely impossible. On one hand, my 'best' memory could be graduating with the accreditations that have helped me succeed in the career I love. On the other hand, my 'best' memory could be determined by a coin flip of the many personal experiences and friendships I developed while I was an SCU student, and yet if I had a third hand, my 'best' could be the in-class HSIE teachings and practicum mentorship from Peter Wilcox. However, almost 6 years since graduating the one thing that sticks in my head, that resonates in my heart is the automatic acceptance, ever valued guidance from, and the lifelong connection to a wonderful friend and educator Neville Jennings. My time at SCU can't be restricted to a single 'best' memory but Neville has a place at the top of the 'bests' without doubt.

Since returning to Canada I have joined the ranks of certified teachers that do not teach. Well, not in the youth education system sense of the profession anyway. That being said, I am in a learning based role where I partner with corporate leaders to create comprehensive learning and development solutions that positively impact the business and ensure the achievement of strategic objectives, strengthen employee capabilities, contribute to an enriched employee experience, and support talent growth. I am very happy with where I've landed!

My SCU experience is one that I continue to reminisce about and speak of to this day. As a Canadian studying abroad I value each day spent in Australia as it provided me with an educational experience unlike any I would have received at home.

Coincidentally upon my arrival to the "Twin Towns" and prior to finding residency, I met a group of Canadian students (also enrolled in my program) in the hostel where I was living. Despite being from very different areas of my home country, these individuals became my family, my home base, my 'Crazy Canucks' (…an endearing term). This group consisted of my roomie Adj, ½ roomie Brady, Bev and Tosh, and Jerry (aka. Darren) and they were with me through good and bad, funny and frustrating, super scary life events and epic amazing party experiences; I even attended the bachelor party (years after returning home and yes, as a female!) and wedding of one. However, I didn't move ½ way around the world just meet new Canadians, my time at SCU would have been incomplete if I weren't also for the introduction to many others who have enriched my life. I was fortunate enough to explore Sydney with a local, attend 'The Races' as a VIP and was privy to her marriage and most recently the birth of her first born. I've celebrated the successful new business venture and continued family-centric happiness of my 'Byron Baybs' beauty, been informed of the wonderful artistic creations by one, the athletic accomplishments of another, and the family expansion bliss of yet another friend; all of which would not have happened were it not for the time I spent at SCU. I was fortunate enough to meet an amazing Bavarian friend who later played excellent host when I attended Oktoberfest in Germany, and was thrilled to play host myself, welcoming an Australian buddy to Canada on two of our most celebrated holidays.

I could go on and on - and on, but to sum up a long answer to a simple question…my experience at SCU gave me much more than an education - it also gave me a network of friends and experiences both during and after my schooling that have positively shaped the person I am today.

Missy Simpson