Maria

Victoria University
Site administrator for a Civil and infrastructure company
Maria studies Bachelor of Construction Management (Honours) at Victoria University

Maria requested that her surname be excluded in this profile

About you

What did you study at undergraduate level and when did you graduate? What are you studying now? Are you studying and working at the same time?

I am currently studying full time and working full time at Vic Uni. I work for a large civil and infrastructure company as a site administrator and I am in my second out of four years in a Bachelor of Construction Management (Honours) 

What have been the most important stages of your life?

Moving high schools to complete my senior years at a different school was important because I was making a massive social change and also I was moving to a school with a great music programme. I have been to university a total of 3 times, and each time I have learnt a lot about who I am, and now I've finally found a course that fits me perfectly. 

How did you get to your current (or most recent) job position and how long have you been working there?

I found my job on careers week, and I have been there for about a month .

About your course

What made you decide to progress with further study?

I worked in real estate for nearly 3 years and I really found a love for organisation, order and buildings. This then lead me into studying construction management because I'm good at leading others and being the head of a team, and I also like a highly stressful job as it keeps me on my toes. 

How did you choose your particular further study course (compared to others)? / Were you weighing up any alternative degrees or career pathways before choosing this qualification?

I chose this course as it was the only one locally, the only other option was in Geelong, and Vic Uni also boasted their 'block mode' innovation, which means that I can still work a 40 hour week and study at the same time without worrying about clashes or exams. 

What was the process to get accepted into your course? What were the prerequisites?

Because I was a mature age student, I didn't need any prerequisites, but I think either a year 10 or 12 pass in English was mandatory. I actually had no problems getting in because of my admission statement - I filled it with my passion for building that I found in real estate. 

What does your study involve? Can you describe a typical day? (if it’s difficult to describe a typical day, tell us about the last thing you worked on?)

A typical day involves me waking up at 4.30am, getting to work at 6am, working until 2pm, starting Uni at 2.30, finishing Uni at 5.30 and then going to the library to study. A typical Sunday is full of me writing up all of my notes for the week ahead. 

Pros and cons

Will this course be beneficial in your career? Where could you or others in your position go from here? Please explain your answer.

It definitley will be beneficial because it means I will be able to climb the ladder where I am, and hopefully be on a very good salary within 5 years of finishing my course. Even though I do not graduate until 2021, my workplace is still considering enrolling me into the graduate program early because I show potential. 

What do you love the most about your course? 

I love the flexibility of the classes as you choose strictly morning or evening classes. It also means that I get to have a social life outside of school because the classes don't run too late. The one benefit of block mode is that we have no exams which makes the course a bit less stressful.

What are the limitations of your course?

Definitely block mode. It is so hard to cram 12 weeks of learning into 4 weeks, and then there is all of the groupwork. Every assignment is done in a group, and because they are so large, you section off the assignment, meaning you don't learn as much as you should. There are also people who do slack a lot and it feels like they get a free ride off the people in their groups who work really hard 

A word to the wise…

Which three pieces of advice would you give to a current undergraduate student? They don’t necessarily have to be related to your studies, or even to one’s professional life. 

  1. Make sure you have a diary, whether digital or physical, it's a life saver and will be your bible.
  2. Dedicate one day a week to pre-class study for the following week.
  3. Just do your assignments. Procrastination is fun but makes so much more stress.