Compliance Monitoring Officer, Auckland Council
Bachelor of Science in Astronomy and Environmental Sciences
For Freya Fortzer, a visit to the Stardome Observatory ignited her passion for science and encouraged her to enrol in a Bachelor of Science at AUT.
“I was working at an office job, and one night I went to a show at the Stardome Observatory. It blew my mind! I went home with the ‘there must be more to life’ feeling that I couldn’t shake.
“I ended up leaving my job, and decided to go back to university to study something I was interested in and passionate about – science.”
Sharing a passion for science
She was impressed by the calibre of the academic staff, says Freya who completed a Bachelor of Science in Astronomy and Environmental Sciences.
“I loved that AUT has lecturers who are accomplished scientists, actively working in the field. They had this encyclopaedic knowledge about the subjects they wanted to share with us, rather than just teaching us how to pass exams.
“One of the astronomy lecturers, for example, did research at the Stardome Observatory. One night he invited the class there to show us a few things and take a look through the Zeiss telescope. It was the first time I’d seen celestial objects in such clarity, and it was probably one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen.”
Freya’s advice for other students is simple – be open.
“Don’t limit yourself, and be open to new experiences and opportunities. You’ll end up a much more interesting person.”
Helping shape Auckland
After graduating at the end of 2018, Freya is now working as a compliance monitoring officer at Auckland Council.
“In this role, I’m using my knowledge of ecology and environmental law to ensure that Auckland is being developed with a focus on environmentally positive outcomes. What I love most about this career is the knowledge that I’m making a change and helping to shape the city.”
She constantly draws on the skills she developed at AUT, Freya says.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to earn myself a position where I’ve been able to use a lot of what I learned at uni to make decisions at work.”