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Pursuing a Lifelong Dream: Stephanie’s Story

Chasing her childhood dream

Ever since Stephanie Curavic was a little girl, she’s always wanted to work with animals.

When she finally decided to pursue her dreams by enrolling in the Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing ACM40418 program at Melbourne Polytechnic, she was determined to see it through, no matter what life threw her way.

“It’s just always what I’ve wanted to do,” Stephanie beams. “I definitely took my time getting there but I just knew from a very young age.”

The journey wasn’t always smooth for this busy student, who welcomed two young children into her family over the course of her studies.

Stephanie recalls, “Finding the time to juggle both the needs of my kids and staying on top of schoolwork has at times been an uphill battle”.

The new parent credits her Melbourne Polytechnic teachers as a key pillar of support during that time, allowing her to continue on with study while still balancing her other responsibilities.

“I couldn’t have asked for better teachers,” Stephanie praises.

“They really accommodated me and made me see it through to the end, even when it was getting pretty challenging.”

Bringing learning to life

In the end, it was a battle worth fighting for, with Stephanie’s hard work starting to pay off once she completed her placement at a Vet Clinic in Glen Iris. There, she was offered a part-time job and continued to work while finishing her studies.

“Everything that I was learning in class, I really got to see it in action in a workplace,” she explains.

“That is one thing I love about this job. You get to do something new and exciting every day while learning from highly skilled nurses and vets.”

These days Stephanie gets to enjoy all the perks of being a qualified Vet nurse, including bringing her seven-year-old pooch Hailey into work on occasion.

Looking back on her time as a student, she acknowledges it was no small feat getting to graduation day.

Celebrating achievements with gratitude

Her dedication didn't go unnoticed, as she went to be honoured with Melbourne Polytechnic's Outstanding Vocational Student of the Year Award in the Food, Fibre, and Animal Industries category.

Lead teacher of Animal Studies Jane Mitrovich applauded Stephanie’s passion for the vet nursing industry, noting her commitment to pursuing study in the face of numerous challenges.

“Stephanie has demonstrated resilience, passion, personality and great quality work,” said Jane.

“She was comfortable in the classroom environment, and feedback from her workplace supervisor was always positive.”

While it might have taken a little flexibility and resourcefulness, Stephanie is certain she made the right choice in pursuing her dream career. To those looking to carve out their own path, the graduate offers this advice:

“It doesn’t matter what’s going on around you, or how old you are, but there’s always time for study,” Stephanie emphasises.

“It’s always a great opportunity to continue to learn, and just go for what you really love to do.”