Meet the Mildura student hoping to earn a Platinum Career Ready Advantage Award before her degree wraps

We love meeting students who are not only doing great things inside the University classroom, but also readying themselves for the world outside of La Trobe.

Students working towards a Career Ready Advantage award are a perfect example.

They’re chipping away at little tasks (many of which they already do thanks to casual jobs or work placements) that will set them up perfectly come job interview time.

Oh, and it all gets recorded on your official academic transcript too.

One of our CRA pioneers is Mildura student Joan Lord. We asked her about why the award program has been a boon for her as she prepared to enter the world of teaching.

MyLaTrobe: What are you studying, what year level and what are your career aspirations for after you graduate?

Joan: I am studying a Bachelor of Education and three weeks away from finishing my degree.  I am in the process of applying for primary teaching jobs so all going well, I might have full-time employment for 2020 in the next week or so.  I would like to further my learning by completing a Masters of Education or Bastow Leadership training to become a leading teacher in a local school.

MyLaTrobe: What award level have you achieved (you mentioned hoping to reach Gold during the mid-semester break)?

Joan: I have achieved Silver Award and am two items away from achieving Gold level. My aim was to reach platinum this year, however with only three weeks left of the semester to collate my information it might be a bit of a stretch.  I will still try to do it though as I’m not sure if anyone else has reached platinum and how great would it be for a regional student to be the first!!

MyLaTrobe: Did you have to do a lot of additional work to achieve the award, or were you already doing the bulk of the required tasks?

Joan: No, the bulk of the tasks to complete each level of the award were subjects or professional development I had been doing on a regular basis throughout my degree.  All I really had to do was collate information and upload it to my CRA portfolio and submit.  I would advise, however, to do this on a more regular basis than I did so you can achieve awards throughout your degree instead of right at the end.  I think it is also a great idea the award level attained appears on your transcript.

MyLaTrobe: What did you learn about your employability/future career during the process that you didn’t know beforehand?

Joan: I learned that the teaching profession is always evolving, challenging and you need to be able to be flexible and adaptable.  Professional learning is a major component of the teaching profession so CRA was a great way to lead up to that.  

MyLaTrobe: What was the most useful part of the process? Have you put any of the content into practice in the outside world?

Joan: The most useful part was that all the professional learning and practical experience can be used to enhance your resume.  Sometimes when PD or activities have been completed through our degree we forget the learning or how they can assist in promoting ourselves for a job.  CRA reminds you of all this experience and an easy record to consult to update your resume.

MyLaTrobe: Has the CRA program put you in contact with any workplaces or employers?

Joan: It has made me more confident when applying for teaching positions as I can refer back to the extra knowledge and professional learning I collated on it.