Almost 500 students will celebrate the completion of their studies at the Central Coast campus on Wednesday 29 June.
Recognising the unique partnership between the University of Newcastle, TAFE NSW – Hunter Institute and the Central Coast Community College, students across the three institutions will gather at Ourimbah to celebrate their achievements.
Pro Vice-Chancellor Central Coast campus, Professor Stephen Crump, said graduation was a highlight of the year.
“Graduation ceremonies are a time for students to celebrate and reflect on their achievements as they enter a new stage of their lives. I congratulate them all and wish them well for the future.”
Of the 465 students graduating, 399 have completed University of Newcastle programs, 58 have completed TAFE qualifications and a further eight are graduating from the Central Coast Community College.
Embargoed until Wednesday 29 June 2011
► Single mother overcomes needle phobia to become nurse
Single mother of five children Jaculin Perceval was petrified of needles, but had a dream of becoming a nurse.
After her youngest child was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes, the Woongarrah mum was forced to face her fears to administer his insulin injection. This inspired her to enrol in a Bachelor of Nursing at the University of Newcastle Central Coast campus.
“It was then that I realised that giving needles didn’t hurt me one bit, so I decided to fulfil my dream of becoming a nurse,” Ms Perceval said.
For the last six months, Ms Perceval has worked as a paediatric nurse at the John Hunter Children’s Hospital and will begin her honours studies in the field later this year.
“Children are the best patients. They are very trusting and I enjoy being able to provide care that maintains and builds the trust they have in the medical profession.”
Ms Perceval said she has achieved her dream with the steadfast support of her children who range in age from nine to 17 years.
“I am pleased that with the support of my lecturers and tutors, combined with the hard work of all of my family I have been able to show my children that any dream is attainable if you set your mind to it,” she said.
“My kids will be at the graduation to celebrate with me because gaining my degree is their achievement as well.”
Ms Perceval will graduate on Wednesday 29 June at 10am.
► Scientific approach to feeding the world
Mandi Palmer’s work ends up on the dinner tables of thousands of people both here and overseas.
Working for one of the world’s most recognised brands at the Heinz cannery in Wagga Wagga, the former Central Coast teacher, uses the knowledge she gained from studying a Bachelor of Food Science and Human Nutrition to ensure the products are safe for the consumer to eat.
“My main role is testing the corned beef that is the primary product of this factory, to make sure that it is safe for consumption. The product is really popular with people in the Pacific Islands.”
Ms Palmer has worked with food for most of her adult life and, after completing a Bachelor of Education Home Economics and Design and Technology, taught at Henry Kendall High School at Gosford before returning to university study.
She excelled in her degree, gaining a High Distinction average, was awarded a scholarship and named on the Faculty of Science and Information Technology commendation list each year of her degree.
“I really enjoyed my 12 years of teaching but was always more interested in the science of food and working in a laboratory setting, so this job is ideal for me.”
Ms Palmer will graduate on Wednesday 29 June at 2pm.
► Roland proves you are never too old to learn
Roland Coss will celebrate two milestones this week - the completion of a tertiary preparation program at the University of Newcastle Central Coast campus and his 79th birthday.
The retiree gave up “endless games of golf” to become a full-time student last year, completing the Intensive Open Foundation Program that gave him the skills and marks he needed to enrol this year in the Bachelor of Arts program at the Central Coast campus.
The grandfather and retired wool buyer and exporter is focussed on gaining top marks in his studies so he can transfer to study law.
“I will not stop until I have my law degree,” Mr Coss said.
“I have always had an interest in torts and the history of the law and came to the decision last year that studying this fascinating area would be my new focus.”
Mr Coss does not own a computer and has had to learn how to use email, the internet and online education tools to submit his assignments.
“I was a wool buyer and exporter for most of my life where I would use a barame (a calculation tool) and a pencil. Learning to use the technology has been a challenge but I get a lot of support from other students and the University’s IT help desk,” he said.
“I still do my research the old fashioned way. I look for books in the library and write my notes and first draft of my assignments by hand.”
Mr Coss will graduate with a statement of attainment from the Intensive Open Foundation Program on Wednesday 29 June at 6pm.
10am: Faculty of Health, Faculty of Business and Law, TAFE NSW – Hunter Institute and Central Coast Community College
Occasional Speaker: Mrs Anne Garlick. Mrs Anne Garlick has worked for almost 30 years in the Information Technology sector and is the Chief Information Officer and General Manager of CommInsure, the Commonwealth Bank’s insurance arm. In 2008 Mrs Garlick was nominated for a Telstra Business Women of the Year Award for her contribution as a mentor for women working in the competitive IT and finance sector. Mrs Garlick lives on the Central Coast and is a Director of the Board of the Central Coast Grammar School.
2pm: Faculty of Education and Arts, Faculty of Science and Information Technology
Occasional Speaker: Mr Tom Alegounarias. Mr Tom Alegounarias is acknowledged as one of the nation’s leading education policy developers. In June 2009, Mr Alegounarias was appointed President of the NSW Board of Studies and is the NSW nominee to the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority Board that is negotiating the development of Australia’s first national curriculum.
6pm: English Language and Foundation Studies Attainment Ceremony
Occasional Speaker: Miss Shona Mackay. Miss Shona Mackay was an international flight attendant who dreamed of becoming a doctor. With the long-term goal of practising paediatric, emergency or psychiatric medicine, Miss Mackay completed the University of Newcastle Intensive Open Foundation Program. At the end of 2011, she will finish the Postgraduate Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery program at Wollongong University. Miss Mackay grew up in Budgewoi and attendant Gorokan High School and is now living on the NSW North Coast.
Media contact: Leonie Brann, Media and Public Relations, on 02 4921 6856 or 0448 898 813.