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Nathan Woods

Melbourne Polytechnic graduate, Nathan Woods, left school with a poor ENTER score and assumed university was out for him.

But he discovered the supportive teaching style at Melbourne Polytechnic suited him. The Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing helped build his skills and confidence, and he now has an A-grade average at Latrobe University.

Wattle Glen resident, Nathan Woods, left high school four years ago, having barely completed Year 12. “I didn’t have a good ENTER score. I was never really a good student.” Today he has an A-grade average at Latrobe University and last year he won Melbourne Polytechnic’s Outstanding Student of the Year award (Faculty of Further Education). For Nathan, studying at Melbourne Polytechnic, gave him the confidence to follow his dream of being a writer.

At school Nathan didn’t have much motivation, but even then his passion for writing was obvious. “In year 11 English they asked us to write a 1000-word short story for an assignment, and I handed in an 8000-word novella. It’s not so much that I chose this path. It kind of chose me.” Despite this, Nathan didn’t have the confidence to develop his craft. “Writing is a very difficult path.” Various retail jobs followed before he decided to enrol in the Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing at Melbourne Polytechnic. “It sounded exactly what I was looking for, a course that would help develop my writing and broaden my skills.”

Nathan says the course, which helps students prepare for careers in publishing, editing and professional writing, helped build his self-belief as well as his portfolio. “The course was fantastic. There was a writing community that would meet every week. Reading my work out loud in front of a crowd helped my confidence a lot.” During the course, Nathan continued writing short stories and humorous pieces. He also worked at Melbourne Polytechnic’s Flat Chat Press doing editing and writing jobs, and had several pieces published in the Melbourne Polytechnic magazine Infusion. “Seeing your work published in a book is a great feeling.”

When he finished, Nathan was accepted in to Latrobe University’s Bachelor of Creative Arts program where he received credits for subjects studied at Melbourne Polytechnic. Now in the second year of his degree, Nathan is hoping to work as a book or a movie critic for a metropolitan daily. “Shortly after high school I didn’t think I would ever make it to university. But the whole experience at Melbourne Polytechnic opened so many doorways for me.”

“I think the TAFE system is better at developing your skills than university. It’s a much more supportive system. At uni you sink or swim. I wouldn’t have been able to adjust to uni without going to TAFE first.”


Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing