"As a member of AHRI, I attended an AHRI Summit where one of the trade stands included a group from CSU. It was explained to me that having nearly completed the AHRI Professional Diploma of Human Resource Management, I could get advanced standing for up to four subjects in my Masters if I enrolled with CSU. The Masters program allowed me to study by distance education, and this really suited my requirements at the time, and I was looking for a qualification in HR at a postgraduate level.
"I lived in Canberra while I was studying and mostly I studied in the evenings and on weekends. The flexibility of being able to study in your own time, in your own space, was the best thing about distance education. I didn't have to attend lectures or tutorials, and I could study whenever I liked. I quite enjoyed sitting around in my pyjamas on the lounge with my laptop and a cup of coffee.
"I was working full-time in a pretty demanding role at the AFP at the time, so I needed to study in my own time. I had also reached a point in my career where I felt that I needed a postgraduate qualification to progress, or at least be able to demonstrate that I was making progress towards a qualification. My decision to study was well-received by my managers, and in fact I was able to use my workplace as a case study for several of the assignments. On more than one occasion, the recommendations I made in my assignments were subsequently adopted in my workplace. I absolutely feel that my studies prepared me for my next promotion, which came shortly after I completed the course. More than anything else, the program taught me to think more analytically and developed my research skills. I found this very useful in developing strategies for real-life organisational issues. I also realised the value of continuous education and this is one of the messages that I push in my current role, where I am responsible for developing the people management capability of this organisation's managers and supervisors. As they say, 'readers are leaders'.
"Connecting with other students studying the same course was very easy. The online chat function was very valuable. We would have online discussions about different assignments, accessing different resources and so on. It was great to chat with people all over the world, often at different stages of their course.
"I started my course with a fairly high level of anxiety. I had not studied for a long time and I was unsure that I would be able to fit it into my life, I was unsure that I could be a student, I was a little scared about the commitment over several years. I found the systems, process and support that I got from CSU helped me put all of those fears behind me. I would not hesitate to recommend CSU as a great place to further your education, career and personal growth. My experience with CSU was a positive one, the staff that I dealt with were clearly very committed as educators and I thoroughly enjoyed my time with CSU."