Service Delivery Administrator, Plunket
Bachelor of Health Science in Public and Environmental Health & Psychology
Attending AUT’s open day made it clear that AUT was the right university for her, says Candace Bath who is graduating with a Bachelor of Health Science in Public and Environmental Health, and Psychology this August.
“Coming from Hauraki Plains College, a small high school in a small community, I wanted my tertiary education to be delivered in a way that was somewhat familiar to me. I went to the AUT open day, AUT LIVE, and saw for myself that the sizes of the lectures and tutorials allow for interactions between students and lecturers. After that day I was set on attending AUT because it gave me the sense of a tight-knit student community with teachers who are available and really care.”
She would recommend AUT to any student who wants to be more than just a number, Candace says.
“If you make the effort and introduce yourself to lecturers and ask questions, they get to know you as a student and are there to offer support and guidance along your academic journey. AUT really goes the extra mile to support students to not only pass their courses, but to flourish as young adults. You should also take advantage of all the support AUT offers. It’s free for students and there to be used.”
Candace had long known that she wanted a career in health.
“I knew that I was interested in health when I was in high school, although I was less interested in the clinical aspects. I chose to study public health because of its holistic approach to health, which aligns with my personal beliefs. This major gave me a lot of flexibility when it came to choosing papers in my second year, and the elective papers that interested me were mostly psychology papers, so it made sense to add psychology as a second major.”
She has enjoyed the broad scope of her degree, Candace says.
“The psychology papers fascinated me, and I feel that they’ve really broadened my thinking and perspective. I also enjoyed the workplace experience in my final semester. It gave me the chance to apply my theoretical knowledge in a practical setting and to learn from those who are already working in public health. This experience challenged me and helped me feel more prepared to start my career.”
Standing out to employers
When Candace graduates later this year, she will not only receive her Bachelor of Health Science but will also graduate with an AUT Edge Award, an initiative that helps students develop the skills employers are looking for.
“I decided to complete the AUT Edge Award to give myself the best chance of being employed as a new graduate. This really pushed me out of my comfort zone because it requires you to put yourself out there. I’m a bit of an introvert so it gave me the motivation to take that first step. The employability workshops helped me learn how to best present myself to potential employers, which I found extremely valuable when the time came to apply for a graduate role.”
She appreciates the support she received from AUT’s Employability and Careers team, Candace says.
“For a while I thought I would be going on to a master’s degree after I graduate, but support from the Employability and Careers team helped me see that I would benefit from getting some experience first. With the employability skills I developed through the AUT Edge Award, I’ve gained a role at Plunket where I can apply the skills I learned through my degree.”