Anna Pearson has always had an interest in criminology and the law, but had never quite found the right career path to combine her passion for justice and her love of working with people.
“I feel like the Diploma is a good stepping stone. It’s good if you’re not sure of what you want to do, but you just want to work in the justice system somewhere.”
She had completed some paralegal qualifications, which Anna describes as “kind of like law 101” but the idea of sitting in an office all day working her way through paperwork didn’t really appeal.
“I did my work placements at a law firm and then they offered me employment for a couple of months filling in while someone was away, but I found that it wasn’t quite interesting enough for me. I prefer to work with people and everyday being a bit different. I’m more of a people person than a formula person.”
Melbourne Polytechnic’s Diploma of Justice seemed like the logical next step, allowing her to examine a few potential career paths in the law. Little did she know at the time, her decision to enrol in the course would provide the answer she had been looking for when she was awarded an Melbourne Polytechnic study grant.
Anna’s used her grant to help fund a trip to Africa where she worked in an orphanage in Kenya. As a regular volunteer with PRACE (Preston Reservoir Adult Community Education), teaching English to asylum seekers living in community detention, she is passionate about social justice and working with refugees.
“I’ve spent a month and a half in Africa working in an orphanage, so I put that money towards my airfares which was very helpful. It also put me on the path that I am on now; I’ve really worked out what I want to do.”
The Diploma did have its challenges along the way, but she found kindred spirits in some of her teachers.
“A couple of my teachers were absolutely fantastic and really made an impact. Genevieve used to love getting into big debates with me in class which I really liked, and Rose was absolutely amazing, she was so lovely. I can’t say enough good things about her.”
Ultimately, Anna wants to work as a Case Manager for refugees, and has just begun a Bachelor of Social Science in Psychology at Swinburne University. As a graduate of the Melbourne Polytechnic Diploma of Justice she received credit for her previous study and went straight into second year of the degree.
“As it turned out, it’s done exactly what I wanted it to do; given me the confidence to step into uni.
Diploma of Justice