13 October 2017
A USC Gympie student with a keen interest in teaching in Aboriginal communities has been recognised as a potential future leader in rural and remote education.
Kierra Jones, 30, was one of only two pre-service teachers from Australia selected to attend the recent national conference of the Society for the Provision of Education in Rural Australia, held at the University of Canberra.
Ms Jones said she was honoured to receive a scholarship to attend the conference, which covered emerging issues and trends for teaching in rural and remote locations and was attended by education professionals, school administrators, teachers and academics.
“It was a valuable experience to network with like-minded people with the same goals and passions, share my opinions, and hear other people’s ideas and strategies on rural education,” she said.
“It should not matter if you live in a city or in the middle of outback Queensland. All students should be given the same opportunities to learn and become successful individuals.”
The mother of two said she had wanted to become a teacher since completing Year 12 at James Nash State High School.
Last year, Ms Jones was awarded a Pearl Duncan Scholarship from Education Queensland to support Indigenous student to become teachers.
She chose to complete her third-year placement in the Aboriginal community of Cherbourg and said the experience had inspired her to work to create innovative learning opportunities for Indigenous students.
“Every day was exciting, different and challenging, but very rewarding. I would encourage any pre-service teacher to do a rural or remote placement, as the experience and knowledge you take away enhances your teaching perspectives.”
USC Lecturer in Primary Education Rosemary Horne said Ms Jones’ commitment to study and her dedication to student outcomes was impressive.
“Kierra is brilliant with students and is so dedicated to doing what she can to assist them to realise their potential,” Ms Horne said.
People interested in studying at USC can go to usc.edu.au/learn for advice on how to choose a course, build study skills and apply to QTAC.
— Clare McKay