22 June 2017
Accounting student Rebel Beckett, 27, has gone from strength to strength after enrolling in a tertiary bridging course at the University of the Sunshine Coast in 2014.
The Aboriginal student from Mooloolah Valley was recently awarded the Zonta Club of Caloundra business bursary – a $2,000 boost for a mature-age student at USC who has experienced educational disadvantage.
Rebel, who is now in the third year of a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) degree, grew up in Western Sydney, left school in Year 10 and had worked in sales assistant roles prior to giving birth to her son, Noah, in 2013.
It was this major life change that prompted Rebel to enrol in USC’s Tertiary Preparation Pathway (TPP) program, viewing the bridging course as a “foot in the door” towards achieving a professional career.
“I didn’t finish high school, and after having my son it became really important to me to build a strong career,” she said. “I really like the idea of building up my own accounting business and working for myself.
“I also want to set an example for my son about hard work and what it means to strive to achieve something.
“When I started TPP, I didn’t know what to expect. But USC eased me into studying really well. And by the time I enrolled in my Bachelor degree, I was confident and ready to go.”
As well as awarding Rebel the business bursary, the Zonta Club of Caloundra invited her to address the club’s annual International Women’s Day cocktail evening earlier this year.
“I spoke about where I’ve come from and how I’ve learnt what I’m capable of by studying at university,” Rebel said. “I’ve had a lot of support, particularly from the Indigenous Services team at USC.
“In the future, I’m hoping to build a career in accounting on the Sunshine Coast, helping small to medium businesses achieve success.”
Rebel also works at her family-owned real estate agency, Magick Realty, in Mooloolah Valley.
Details about study options and pathways to becoming a university student are available at USC’s website and at USC’s annual Open Day on Sunday 23 July.
— Gen Kennedy