Careers, Paths and where my course is taking me.

Onella Khan

Faculty: Health, Social Care & Education
Department: School of Education and Social Care
Course: BA (Hons) Education and Childhood Studies
Category: Education

16 August 2016

Since my last blog post quite a bit has changed for me. I have finished my second year of Education and Childhood Studies and I couldn’t be happier with how my course has gone over this past year.

Untitled PageWhen I started this course in 2014, I was almost 100% positive that teaching was the career for me. Since then my experiences in and out of university have made me realise that teaching isn’t the only career for a person with an educational degree.

Julia Carr and the other staff in the Education Department hosted a fantastic and eye opening session that allowed people from all walks of life to talk to us about their career and the different paths we could take. They all still worked within an educational setting but not all were teachers. This session alone made me rethink my course and what I could do differently.

I had already considered both primary and secondary teaching and I even volunteered within a primary school to gain experience. However, the more I contemplated teaching the more I began to doubt myself as someone suitable to become a teacher. I then thought about higher education, I looked towards teaching again but realised that maybe being at the front of a classroom wasn’t what I wanted, but rather to be a support.

My course has helped me to develop my understanding of higher education and it made me realise that we are all at university because we have chosen to be there. I decided that I wanted to find out more about the support and student services that we as students can access, what they provide and what careers are available in this area.

However, even though I don’t intend to use my degree towards becoming a teacher, I have decided that while I am young I want to experience the world. My classroom experience in Trinidad and Tobago made me realise how exciting it is to enter a new environment and meet new people and experience different cultures.

As I have progressed through my modules, one in particular, Education Studies 2, has helped me to expand my knowledge of different educational systems. Deciding to be a bit different I looked into Japan’s educational system. It was hard to initially start the coursework and I even debated changing my topic to an easier country to research, but I decided to try researching again and I was able to find a unique topic which sparked my interest in higher education.

All this research made me realise that I would like to go to Japan and experience their education system from a first-hand perspective. I spoke to my friends, family and recapped on what I had heard from others and many people have encouraged me to look at teaching English abroad. I looked into different companies that offered graduates the opportunity to spend a year in Japan teaching English as a teaching assistant. I immediately knew that this was something that I would be interested in.

I felt that one month wasn’t enough time in Trinidad and Tobago to fully indulge in the education and even now I wish I was still there to offer help and guidance to the students that happily accepted my methods of teaching. Education and Childhood Studies has helped me to understand the different ways of teaching that each country adopts and that we have different methods that could help change a student’s understanding of a subject. There is so much that we can learn from different people and places.

I hope that my undergraduate major project will help expand my knowledge around higher education so that I can gain an understanding as to why we attend higher education. Soon I plan to step into the unknown and so will many of us. Some of us (including myself) are still unsure of what we want to do after we finish university on a long term scale, but we need to remember that we aren’t bound by our choices. So, I want to end with a quote that I hope will help many people to embrace the unknown.
Life begins quote
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