Knowledge you can carry anywhere

In moving from Germany to Australia, Heidi had to start fresh. She's now got a degree, and a role with the Tasmanian State Government.

Often, it’s not about what you study, but the fact that you’ve gained a degree, as well as a wealth of transferrable skills and knowledge. German-born Heidi earned a degree in criminology, and with the skills she’s learned, she’s built a career in the Australian public service.

At age 25, Heidi moved from Germany to Sydney to begin an exciting career abroad. Due to the different schooling systems between the two countries, Heidi’s studies weren’t recognised in Australia. Through OUA, she was able to make a new start, despite being without an ATAR score, or prior uni qualifications. She’s now got a degree under her belt, and has been working for the Tasmanian state government, in public administration as a Manager Secretariat.

Criminology and criminal justice student Heidi Jones at work
Heidi - Studied the Criminolgy and Criminal Justice with Griffith University, through Open Universities Australia.

Heidi’s work environment is ever-changing, and always keeps her on her toes. “Public service by its very nature changes at every election – depending on who forms the government, they either change things, or keep going”. Heidi manages a small team, whose role it is to serve as a liaison point between the Department of State Growth, and its six ministers. The team ensures that requests are briefed to the right people, and all required approvals are obtained.

It was 10 years ago when Heidi graduated with a Bachelor of Criminology and Criminal Justice from Griffith University, completed online through OUA. Although her current role lies outside of the justice system, Heidi was driven by her love of learning. She had a great interest in crime – particularly of how the justice system found its feet, and moved from being based on assumptions, to hard evidence. The psychology behind criminality was fascinating to Heidi, and became a highly enjoyable component of her course.

Criminology and criminal justice student Heidi Jones in the park

The great thing was, Heidi’s knowledge gained through study was applicable to all industries, not just criminology. She’s taken these skills with her into the public service, including how to write well, research, and form strong working relationships with people. As for learning in an online environment, Heidi felt naturally at ease. “I’m a committed distance learner, so I prefer to be self-managed rather than be managed by others” she says.

Heidi is setting her sights on a director role, as the natural next step up. With some very handy skills up her sleeve and a whole lot of passion, Heidi is bound to succeed.

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