Published on 9 July 2014
A University of the Sunshine Coast student who gladly swapped the cold winters of South Australia for balmy Queensland has been equally pleased to exchange a future in finance for a career in counselling.
Naomi Madera, 23, of Mooloolaba, is one of 10 students taking part in work placements this year as part of USC’s partnerships with almost 100 human services organisations across the region.
Naomi recently completed a 10-week work placement with Harmony House in Maroochydore as part of the final-year assessment of her Bachelor of Counselling degree.
“Harmony House helps families in conflict by ensuring the smooth changeover of children between parents who are separated,” she said.
“They also work closely with the families to arrange appropriate contact visits between children and non-residential parents.”
“It has been amazing to complement my USC studies by working with such a great team of people delivering a service that is helping many families in need.
“I have learnt a lot from their knowledge and experience.”
Naomi said she moved from South Australia to study at USC because she has always wanted to live in Queensland. She began a Financial Planning degree but changed to Counselling because of a strong desire to help people through social work.
“I’m very glad I made both moves,” she said. “It really has been wonderful.”
USC Field Education Coordinator for Human Services and Counselling Christine Boulter said Harmony House was a valuable partner in the work placement program.
“The placements are an important part of our students’ degrees,” Ms Boulter said.
“They provide an excellent way for students to put the theories they’ve learned into practice and gain real-life experience while developing their skills under supervision.”
– David Cameron