For most high school students, balancing their social life with studies, work responsibilities and sports commitments is nigh impossible. For local 18-year-old Madeline Bennet, it was necessary to achieve her dream of studying physiotherapy at the University of Canberra.
The promising rowing athlete knew it was a hotly contested degree to enter, but she was certain she knew what she wanted to do.
“As I was progressing with my rowing, I was lucky to be exposed to the elite sports arena and the extensive support crew behind the sport,” she said. “Physiotherapy interested me straight away so I decided it was the career that I wanted to pursue.
“It’s a job where I can help people and it is different every day and I get the chance to meet lots of new people. Most importantly it’s not a desk job.”
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Madeline made her decision early in Year 10 and from that moment dedicated herself to achieving the ATAR needed for the degree. The Mary McKillop graduate successfully juggled her high school studies with an elite rowing program to achieve an ATAR of 98.05.
“Even though I had to juggle school and sport, I wouldn’t have changed the past couple of years because that is what exposed me to the career I want to get into,” she said with a smile.
“I was very motivated and I had a goal of what I wanted to achieve and I just tried to manage my time as best as I could. It took a fair bit of planning but I knew what I wanted to do so I just got it done.”
The nervous wait was finally over for thousands of school leavers just prior to Christmas, with universities sending out their first-round offers to hopeful students like Madeline.
UC Vice-President University Relations and Strategy Belinda Robinson said UC has made 2923 offers in the early and latest rounds, with 1296 of those being Canberra students.
“For those who didn’t receive an offer in this first round, second round offers will be made in early January,” Ms Robinson said.
“We shouldn’t forget that a university education is no longer just for the highest achieving students. There are more avenues into university than ever before. So for those who may not have done as well at school as they feel they could have, have been disadvantaged in some way or wish to up-skill, re-skill or change career direction, they should contact UC.”