University student Sara Pickup has had a love-hate relationship with technology.
Emails and the internet may not have always come easily to Ms Pickup, but thanks to a university preparation course, the criminology student has the tools to begin her degree.
“Technology and me, we don’t really go together; if it can go wrong, it will,” Ms Pickup said.
University students are preparing to start Semester 1 on February 25 and Ms Pickup said she had originally felt daunted about beginning her degree in a new discipline.
“I have always been interested in behaviour and criminology but when I was young I didn’t really think about my career,” she said.
“I sort of fell into retail and hospitality and stayed there.”
However, after her partner Ben took the leap and went back to university to change careers and become a geologist, Ms Pickup became inspired to follow her passion.
The University Preparation Program gave her a way into her chosen degree and prepared her for the academic study to come.
“I didn’t get the right marks, academically, to get into university,” she said.
The UPP gives students an insight into university life, and teachers skills like communication, research and how to use technology to write and submit assignments.
Ms Pickup said they were all skills that seemed straightforward but what she learned was invaluable.
“If I had just gone straight into doing a degree and had not done the UPP and taken full advantage of what it had to offer, there is no doubt in my mind I would have crashed and burned at the first hurdle and run for the hills,” Ms Pickup said.
“I didn’t want to be doing a job I really didn’t like for the next 30 years or so. I’m working hard to re-educate myself and eventually do a job I’m really interested in for the next 25 years.”
UTAS UPP coordinator Paula Johnson said the program was flexible and designed to provide adult learners with academic learning skills and the confidence and personal skills needed to succeed at university.
“There is an enormous diversity of students who enrol in the University Preparation Program, but a common theme is an enthusiasm and dedication which is shown in the approach to study,” Ms Johnson said.
“Their achievements are an inspiration to staff and peers alike.”
Ms Pickup will study forensic psychology at the UTAS Newnham campus this year.
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