Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 

Get Qualified to Get Heard

29 November 2005

Get Qualified to Get Heard

Karen Kjestrup has travelled a lot to study. Sometimes she has even slept in her car to be able to attend classes. "That didn't usually happen, my other classmates have let me stay and made me a part of their family," says Karen. "It's not very nice sleeping in a car, now I know how some of my clients feel." Karen had been working in the mental health field in Wanganui, coordinating support for mental health services.

She is passionate about her work but realised that she needed a degree in order to be heard and make a real difference * so she enrolled in Drug and Alcohol Studies at WelTec. "I was as an average achiever at school," says Karen. "I didn't do too well. But because WelTec's approach lets you build one qualification on top of another it's less intimidating. I didn't have to commit to a degree up front and I could have left early with a certificate or diploma if I had wanted to."

"It's really challenging personally and intellectually. I think I came in with a toolbox of skills and experiences that I could draw on to help my understanding during my study. It helped me learn. I could connect the theory in class with my own experience. I struggled with theory in the first year but it was worth the effort, it makes total sense now and it gets much more enjoyable.

Karen is pleased that she has seen her studies all the way through to degree level though. "I didn't leave last year with a diploma, like a lot of other students did because they were offered jobs. I'm glad now because I gained a lot from the last year. Karen says she has worked with clients all the way through her study and that it is an important part of the learning. "I found my own placement at Good Health Wanganui.

Anyone coming into the course should be really proactive about finding exactly the placement they want because it can turn into a job at the end, as it has for me," says Karen.

Karen's job at Good Health Wanganui is in 'dual diagnosis' * people who have both mental health issues and alcohol and drug problems. "I'll be working with clients with more challenging problems than when I was working in the community. I'll also be working as part of a team to educate families and support people and coordinate support groups.

Karen is so enthusiastic about study now she will do post graduate study. "I think I'll have a break first though." Frances Mason at Good Health Wanganui has closely supervised Karen's work during her placement. She says that Karen's progress over the time of her study has been profound.

"The fact that she has been given a rock solid foundation of theory and knows how to apply it practically is obvious in all the work she does. Karen has worked hard but she has obviously had hours of input from good tutors," says Frances. For more information on any of WelTec's Counselling or Drug and Alcohol programmes call 0800 WELTEC

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>


Howard Davis: Benjamin Ree's The Painter and The Thief

The Norwegian filmmaker had long been fascinated by art thieves who commit high-stakes crimes with a delicate touch when a chance Google search in 2015 uncovered a botched heist in Oslo. More>>


Howard Davis: Anna Coddington Beams

Anna Coddington's thin, wispy vocals fit her songs beautifully, providing a wonderful lilting quality that pervades her latest album, producing instant ear worms. More>>


Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>

Howard Davis: Byrneing Down the House - Spike Lee's American Utopia

Lee does an admirable job capturing Byrne's stunning live performance of his latest album, but the real star of the show is the staging. More>>


Howard Davis: The Phoenix Foundation Friend Ship Tour Docks in Wellington

A sense of local pride was certainly running high at the Opera House on Saturday night, as the lads ran through a tasty little set drawn mostly from their latest album Friend Ship (splash out for Xmas on the shocking pink extra-thick vinyl edition). More>>


Howard Davis: Avantdale Bowling Club

Auckland rapper and MC Tom Scott brought his stunning jazz-infused Taite Music Prize-winning project Avantdale Bowling Club to the Opera House headlining Wellington's 2020 Jazz Festival. More>>

Howard Davis: Troy Kingi Rules The San Fran

The award-winning Northland musician performed songs from his new record The Ghost of Freddie Cesar, the fourth installment in his 10/10/10 series - ten albums in ten years in ten genres. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland