Published on 6 February 2014
With strong interests in social justice and the performing arts, Beth McKenna of Palmwoods believes she has found the perfect study program for her at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
Beth, 17, has enrolled in a combined degree in Law and Arts, which is being offered for the first time at USC when Semester 1 begins on Monday 3 March.
The program is one of USC’s new suite of Law degrees that includes a Bachelor of Laws for undergraduates and postgraduates along with other combined degrees in Business, Commerce (Accounting), Creative Writing, Journalism, Science and Social Science.
The St Patrick’s College Gympie graduate, who gained an OP2, is aiming for a career in advocacy or public policy with the goal of helping those in need.
“I really just want to empower people who are disempowered, but I don’t know how I’m going to do that just yet,” she said. “I’ve enrolled at USC because I found the subjects on offer here were much better for what I wanted than at other universities.
“I loved Legal Studies at high school and all my subjects were humanities subjects. I’m really interested in development studies – how societies develop and deal with inequities and issues of injustice.
Beth also said she chose to study at USC after hearing positive comments from past USC students about how helpful and personable the University’s academics were.
“I think the small size of the uni is great,” she said. “My high school had only 400 or so students and I loved the strong sense of community.”
At St Patrick’s, Beth was a member of the student council and the school’s social justice group that raised money for a number of local charities.
Her love of performing saw her star as the female lead, Anne of Cloves, in the school’s musical comedy ‘Henry’ last year.
Beth also plays guitar, and performed with family members at last year’s Peregian Originals community concert. She is keen to pursue her cultural interests while at university.
USC will welcome more than 3,000 new students to its annual Orientation Week from 24-28 February before Semester 1 begins on Monday 3 March.
— Terry Walsh