I thoroughly enjoyed studying the Cerificate of Design and Art at Unitec, Mt Albert campus, last year. For personal reasons, last year was a bit of a toughie, so the course was something of a life-saver. My time there absolutely flew and I felt that my interest in art and art making really grew and developed. I learned to look at art/practioners in a fresh way. Mostly I painted my way through the course, though I did have a go at both graphic design and photograhy as well. All very enjoyable. Met lots of interesting people, mostly younger than myself (no, I'm not ancient yet), but some near my age as well. Overall, it was a very enriching experience, and I believe, certificate level is an excellent introduction to tertiary study. Having left school at sixteen, I have often regretted not going to Uni when I should have. I ended up going from job to job with no real fulfullment. Returning to study, was the only way out of this dilemma, I decided. Especially as my job had dried up, anyway. For me, starting at certificate level served as an excellent taster and introduction of just what is involved in tertiary study, and what the expectations/requirements are for success and high grades. The staff are very committed to helping the students through the course, and the on-campus facilities are fantastic. You couldn't ask for better.
Being rather indecisive at times, I almost continued this line of study, and I was going to undertake a degree in Visual Arts. However, the field of Social Practice and social work really interests me as well, and in the end, I decided upon the latter as I can paint my my spare time, and maybe bring it into a social context at a future date. I do need to look towards employment though, and this is why I decided to undertake the Social Practice degree instead.
I will greatly miss the greenery and space of the Mt Albert campus, but it is nice to be near the Henderson mall, movies, shops etc, (not that I'll have time for movies, etc!) if further away from home. I would still like to undertake a painting degree at a later date, perhaps extramurally. I love the thought of working within the social services as well, and could maybe combine this with my creative bent. Being a nightowl, I can always paint into the small hours...
I've already met a diverse range of people at the Waitakere campus. There is much reading, research and writing to be done. Yikes. Scary stuff, but also very exciting. The only real low overall is the fact that I cannot study both degrees at once, much as I would like to! Also, I will miss the people I met last year, though I will try to keep in touch. Such a privilege, higher education, whatever the discipline. I am hoping at the end of my degree to obtain not just a job, but a career, that I will love and grow in, while helping others at the same time. Awesome. Lots of politics involved, too. Just up my alley...this blog may well become even more neglected than it's been of late. Hopefully not! It's something I enjoy doing/coming back to, now and again.
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