Staying in uni accommodation on campus is brilliant. You meet new people. There are mentors to tell you what to expect. There are tutors and counsellors and you don’t have to fight for parking on campus or catch a bus.
It costs over $20,000 to stay in university accommodation. See sample fees and charges HERE.
These scholarships will make uni accommodation more affordable.
The cost of travel and living in the city stop students from the country going to university. This isn’t news. There is lots of financial support available to help overcome this problem. Check out the financial support listed here.
For students who need to relocate from a regional or remote area to commence an undergraduate degree at Curtin University, who are from a low socioeconomic background and are experiencing financial hardship. Find more at Harry Perkins Memorial Scholarship.
The Convocation of UWA Graduates and The University of Western Australia (‘the University’) are providing a scholarship to assist an eligible regional or remote student with the cost of accommodation at University Hall or other college affiliated with the University.
The UWA Harry Leaver Scholarship assists eligible regional or remote students, preferably from Moora or the Mid West region, with the cost of accommodation while they commence and pursue a Bachelor of Science at UWA.
The UWA Harry Leaver Scholarship provides $15,000 per annum to support accommodation fees at University Hall, and is administered and awarded by the University of Western Australia.
ECU provide scholarships which have been established specifically to assist students who normally live in a rural, regional or remote area of Western Australia, or in some cases Australia wide, who are having to relocate in order to study at University.
These include the following scholarships for undergraduate students:
High achieving regional students are encouraged to apply for a scholarship that will help them with their living costs when they move to the city to study at Murdoch University.
The George Alexander Foundation (GAF) is offering six scholarships to the value of $24,000 which successful applicants can use towards the cost of their living and accommodation expenses while in Perth.
Once you step off the education treadmill, you will have time to look around and check out the world.
Here are 3 gap year stories to give you some ideas.
Story 1: Equestrian Centre in the South of France
Ariel finished school with an ATAR of 93. She didn’t know what she wanted to do although she generally liked sciences rather than arts.
When she was in Year 10 Ariel went on a holiday to Spain and France with her mother. She loved travelling and discovering other countries.
While she was at school Ariel made money by babysitting. She had done babysitting for a family of doctors since she was in Year 10. She used the money she made to support her equestrian hobby.
Ariel decided that she would take a gap year. Work for 6 months to save money to travel to France where she would work as a nanny.
She signed on to a couple of French sites, like Seek, searching for jobs as a nanny. She got her babysitting employers to write her a reference. While she was searching she found an advertisement for a job working at an equestrian centre in the South of France.
She applied for the job and got it.
She travelled to France and worked for 6 months, earning very little, but learning French, working with horses and seeing lots of the country.
After 6 months she came back and is currently studying paramedicine.
Story 2: Volunteering Abroad
Chloe studied Certificate II in Hospitality while at school and worked part-time in cafes.
She comes from a migrant background and is interested in other cultures and the struggles that people go through in other countries.
Chloe wanted to volunteer abroad. She contacted a couple of the organisations that organise young volunteers abroad and found out what sort of experience she needed and what sort of work she could do.
Chloe worked several jobs in coffee shops and cafes in the months after she left school and attended meetings to find out more about volunteering requirements and opportunities.
Chloe applied for several opportunities in Africa and Cambodia. After a few months, she was offered a 6-month position working in an orphanage in Tanzania.
She paid for her own airfare but her accommodation and meals were paid for.
Meeting the orphans and working with them was fantastic. The workers at the orphanage were friendly and helpful.
Chloe had a single room in a share house with other volunteers. Her work was mainly caring for children aged 4 – 7 years and cleaning and cooking. She had to walk 3 kilometres to work and back each day and it was hot. The mosquitoes were plentiful.
During her 6 months, Chloe made friends with other volunteers from the USA. She learned how tough and corrupt life can be for some children. She also got to visit Serengeti National Park on the way home.
Chloe is now buying a share in a cafe that she is managing.
Story 3: Fashion Design in New York
Georgia finished school with an ATAR of 73. She is very stylish and spent much of her childhood living in a resort that her parents managed.
Georgia has a keen interest in fashion and considered specialising in Fashion Design at Curtin University where some of her friends had enrolled in different courses.
Georgia saw a career advisor and then began working on a plan to work for a family friend in a resort for 6 months, before going to New York to do a 6-week fashion and design course.
The cost of doing the course and of living in New York was prohibitive so Georgia got in touch with the College and they were able to arrange for her to share accommodation with some other students.
Georgia got in touch with the students she was to share with and found out who they were and where they lived. She arranged to rent a room in their accommodation.
She borrowed money from her mother as a safety net, then flew to New York a week before the course started.
The course was fantastic. New York was fantastic.
She met people she could never have met in Australia and learned about the New York fashion industry. She also learned practical design skills and about marketing in the fashion industry.
She had a brilliant time.
Chloe returned to Australia and began working in a holiday resort again to pay back the money she borrowed from her mother.
She has completed a Diploma in Hospitality and has credits to do a Hospitality Degree.
Teachers who want to help West Australian students to discover career opportunities need In Focus Careers News
My quest is to democratize career opportunities in Western Australia by broadcasting opportunities and advice to all who will listen. You can tap into my work.
People from the Department of Education will chase you up to find what’s going on.
You will cut ties with your friends and your support network of teachers, student services, VET coordinators, career advisors at school.
You could end up alone and feeling lost.
BETTER WAY: Do this preparation.
Step 1: Talk with family and friends
Don’t shock your family and friends by just dropping out of school. They will get upset and add to your stress.
Talk with them, flag the idea of leaving school early. Ask what they think. Get their ideas and support.
Step 2: Get expert information
Your Mum’s best friend or your maths teacher is not the expert that you need right now. There’s a lot to know about leaving school. Talk to an expert whose full time job it is to know about career pathways.
This mind map provides links to expert information about leaving school in WA. Play with different links to see what’s available. Write down questions to ask your career advisor.
Meet with your school career advisor
Take a list of questions.
If you don’t know what you want to do, they will explore different opportunities with you.
They can help you to get a job application ready.
They can link you with an apprenticeship/traineeship company that employs lots of apprentices.
Jobs and Skills Centre free information and advice
Jobs and Skills Centresare co-located at TAFE colleges. There are 17 across WA and they provide free information, advice and support.
Industry Training Hubs
If you live in the Wanneroo or Armadale areas, engage with the Industry Training Hub. They are set up to help students to engage with people from different industries to find out what is involved.
Private Career Practitioners
Look up “career practitioners” in your “suburb”. There will be career practitioners who can be employed to guide you through the process from school into a job or further study.
Step 3: How to leave school
Get your career advisor and family to help you to arrange a full-time job, enrol in a full-time course or a combination of both.
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Doing work experience or work placements is usually pretty safe. Any organisation that is willing to volunteer to support your school has their heart in the right place.
School based traineeships and apprenticeships
Students doing school based traineeships and apprenticeships may be more at risk as they are in the workplace longer and may be in workplaces where there aren’t many people.
Part time work
Part time workers are most at risk. Young part time workers have low status in the workplace and are vulnerable to being treated badly.
Get to know the Code of Practiceso that you know what your rights are. Part time workers are usually not members of a union so they can’t relay on support if they are treated badly. The Code of Practiceis designed to support you and other vulnerable workers and you don’t need to be a union member to get this protection.
There will be workplace procedures set up so that employees have someone to talk to about bad work practices. Workplace inductions will need to make sure that new workers are aware of how to make a complaint.
There will need to be plans to eliminate toxic work practices.
Hopefully support for young FIFO workers will improve, women will face less harassment in mining sites and isolated workplaces will need to be safe for all workers.
Danielle Kabilio told me about these changes when we were having a coffee last week. She is a Psychosocial Coach at Careers West and is helping workplaces to put in new systems and managing grievances that must be addressed under this Code of Conduct.
She sent in information and links for me to pass on.
Subscribe to In Focus Careers News to discover career opportunities in Western Australia
The horticulture industry relies on people to pick their fruit and veggies. In the past the pay and conditions have been shocking, but the pandemic caused the industry to change work practices. The Harvest Trail is a more regulated employment trail for nomads.
Working as a CBH harvest casual is a great opportunity to explore, live, work and immerse yourself in regional Western Australia (WA) for a short period of time while earning decent wages.
CBH manages sites all across regional WA where our growers deliver their grain once it has been harvested, and each year we recruit a pool of harvest employees to help us keep these sites moving, getting growers and transporters in and out safely, quickly and back to harvesting.
If you can find a job in a resort or motel chain, take that, it is more likely to pay sick leave, holiday pay and superannuation. Wherever you get a job, make sure your pay and conditions are legit. Ring or email the Fair Work Ombudsman if you need to check.
Work on a Station
Can’t ride a motor bike or muster cattle? Maybe you can make scones or serve coffee.
Ellenbrae Station, halfway between Derby and Kununurra, sells thousands of scones to tourists who travel up the Gibb River Road every year.
Most stations supplement their incomes through tourism.
If you can clean you can probably find a job supporting the station tourism industry. Look for jobs on sites like Seek.
Gap Year in Defence (skip this section if you don’t want to try defence opportunities)
The Australian Department of Defence provides a structured, paid path to discover lots of stuff.
You meet lots of new people from different places and find out about their lives. You will probably make friends for life with people you meet at this time.
You get to leave home without having to pay for rent, electricity and food.
You learn new skills. Trying lots of different roles and learning new skills will help you to decide what you like and don’t like, without spending time and money at uni or TAFE.
You find out about life in the army, navy or air force.
Army Reserves – if you would like to serve part time
If you want to do something really different on a part time basis, while helping the community and giving something back to our country, you can apply to join the Navy, Army or Air Force Reserve. There are a range of Reserve jobs in every category, so please check the entry requirements on each job page. Find out more HERE.
Once you leave school it is tricky getting work experience as employers aren’t insured to cover unpaid volunteers.
In Western Australia you can apply for volunteer work through Volunteering WA. People put in requests for volunteers to them and they place people and cover them through the Volunteering WA insurance.
The Volunteering WA people said that when you first start with them they are careful of the sort of work they let you do until you have proven yourself.
Check out Youth Central. It’s a Victorian Government site that has clear, unbiased tips on taking a gap year.
How to Prepare for a Gap Year – Tips from Omio
Omio has sent me a link to their Gap Year Guides which delivers great resources to prepare for a Gap Year.
The guide contains detailed information on:
The benefits of taking a gap year
How to organize a gap year step by step (e.g., accommodation, transportation, entry requirements & travel restrictions)
Itinerary suggestions and tips for travelling in Europe on a budget
Volunteering in Europe (10 suggestions)
How to successfully find and apply for an internship in Europe
You can use the skills you developed when coming to high school to guide your transition from high school to uni.
Tip 1: Where
Online Study V On Campus
Get your student number and connection to the internet sorted. You will be given instructions about how to do this around Christmas time with the offer that comes after the final TISC results come out.
If face to face classes are available on campus, go to them. Uni is so much more than curated information about different subjects.
On Campus Accommodation
If you CAN stay on campus, do that.
We want students to stay at the on campus accommodation, whether they are from South East Asia or South Perth.
Professor Harlene Hayne, Vice Chancellor Curtin University
St Catherine’s College Curtin
There are people employed by residential colleges who have knowledge, networks and power to create an amazing university life for you. You will make friends for life, get help with study and create networks that will lead to jobs.
If you will be taking public transport to uni, figure out the best route and timetable and find out how to get your SmartRiderticket.
Not being able to find parking when you are under pressure can break you.
Get your parking stickers/app during the holidays. Find where you can park and where to find parking during peak hours. Try to find free parking, although most good free spots will be taken by students who have been at uni for a while.
Go to movies, food van markets, play sport or join clubs on campus. Each baby step you make to become familiar with your uni will make your transition easier.
Walk around the campus. If you are doing engineering, go to the engineering building. Check out the room and lab locations. Find the library.
Whatever course you are doing, find your buildings and know where your classes will be held BEFORE Orientation Week.
Tip 2: What Subjects
If you aren’t certain which subjects to take, do a uni prep course – its free and it will help you to make better subject choices. You will be able to go to the same campus as your friends who are leaping into their degree straight away, and you will learn enough to be clear about what course you want to do before you start your degree.
About 30% of students change courses as they find out more about their degree. This is an expensive path to take. Each subject/ unit at university will cost around $2000. You can check how much each unit will cost on the UWA Fee Calculator.
Only 26% of university students go straight there from school on their ATAR results. Consider taking a gap year before you go to uni. You will expand your world and get clearer about what you want to do next. Check out Gap Year Ideas
If you are worried that you won’t ever start to study again if you stop studying after Year 12, go to uni and choose broad subjects that allow you to specialise later, when you know more about the course or working in that industry.
In response to COVID disruption ALL universities in Western Australia have significantly increased the amount of support that is available to future students. Use the free career advice that is available at every university.
Tip 3: When – Timetable
Lectures, tutorials and workshops will be scheduled throughout the week. You choose your timetable.Your school timetable is a good model to follow when choosing your class times.
Treat uni like school. Organise your timetable so that you go to uni every day. Don’t be tempted to pack your scheduled times into a few days and just go during scheduled times. Spend your “free time” doing your research and assignments.
If you treat uni as a job, with a 40 hour week and some good study planning you are on a good path to success. Schedule breaks where you meet your friends and where you play sport or engage in club activities. A mix of work and play is what you need to have a great time at uni.
Tip 4: Friends
The friends you make at uni can stay with you for your entire life.
There will be so many people to choose from. If you go to Curtin, there will be about 50,000 people to choose from. If you go to Notre Dame in Fremantle, which is our smallest uni, you will have about 6,000 to choose from.
If you pick clubs or sports or volunteer activities from the amazing choice that is available, you will find friends there who have the same interests as you. You can join clubs during Orientation Week.
If you arrange to stay at university accommodation you will meet lots of new people there.
So just 4 Tips
Decide what uni to go to and how to get there.
Decide what to study, or at least choose a path that will help you to decide.
Look at timetables for this year. The chances are that they won’t change much next year. You will be able to draft your study timetable before Orientation Week.
Look forward to meeting a bunch of new, wonderful people who like doing the same things that you do.
Get clear, unbiased career information for West Australian school students and educators.