The flexibility around her study offered by SIT2LRN is making life much easier for Invercargill student Reiana Cooper.
She’s part-way though the Bachelor of Professional Communication but is juggling her study with caring for her grandmother as well as everything that goes with having an 8-year-old daughter.
It’s not her first stint with the Southern Institute of Technology, having almost completed a Bachelor of Nursing but falling “at the last hurdle” due to a health issue.
But she’s undeterred about furthering her education, which was interrupted when she was “chucked into the parenting pool at 18”.
She attended the Murihiku Young Parents Learning Centre to finish school, earned a Sir Paul Callaghan Gold scholarship, and then began her nursing study, which had a part to play in her choosing a communications course.
“I love working with people and I thought it would help me continue to develop my knowledge base around working with people in all forms and areas.
“Working remotely is an excellent idea and works best for my lifestyle right now.
“I’m living with my Nana as she needs additional support, and so being able to be with her while also being able to study is a huge positive.”
While it could be a challenge to stay on task, it was also teaching her discipline and focus, as well as helping her work out what style of time management worked for her, she said.
“This course has taught me about my own subconscious prejudices, and what I like versus what I don't like. For example, I had no interest in law or politics and now I’m finding them the most interesting and engaging parts of the degree.”
Once she graduates, Reiana is keen to use it as a base to become a court registry officer or a paralegal/legal executive, or even go full circle and explore opportunities in public health communications.
“I’ll just see where the rest of the degree takes me as it covers so many aspects.”