Published on 16 April 2015
When lawyer Patricia Aaroe came to Australia 16 years ago as a Peruvian refugee who spoke only Spanish, she wanted to improve her local knowledge and communication skills to help other people in difficult circumstances.
This week, the 52-year-old mother of two from Wishart will officially graduate with a Bachelor of Justice and Legal Studies from the University of the Sunshine Coast, after completing the degree at its SouthBank campus. She also receives a Faculty commendation.
Ms Aaroe will join Amy Bowles, 20, of Arana Hills, in becoming the first two USC graduates to complete their studies entirely at USC SouthBank in Brisbane.
Miss Bowles, who also graduates from Justice and Legal Studies and intends to work in the legal system, said the kindness and support of lecturers ensured her success. She is now studying law and business at Brisbane’s Queensland University of Technology.
USC this year offers four complete degrees at USC SouthBank: Bachelor of Business, Bachelor of Business (Tourism, Leisure and Event Management), Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) and Master of Professional Accounting.
Ms Aaroe, whose eldest son also studied International Business courses at USC, now aims to work with Indigenous communities in connection with the justice system.
“USC SouthBank was a fantastic experience for a mature-age student living in Brisbane,” she said. “I’m so grateful to the lecturers and people like Academic Skills Adviser David Duncan for their support.”
— Julie Schomberg