Cathy Holland (Ireland)

studying Certificate III & IV in Disability

Cathy Holland

I volunteered at an ATE (Alternative To Employment) organisation in Perth without any previous experience. I soon grew to love the job and decided I wanted to gain a further qualification in the field to allow me to be more confident at work. I asked work colleagues/my manager what qualifications were most relevant to my line of work and all recommended the Cert courses offered by Challenger, due to the large practical portion involved, making learning very relevant to my everyday work. I researched the costs involved, the length of study time and the relevance of the course to my chosen career path. I was happy with all of the latter and confident in my decision.

I have found my chosen course extremely interesting and very relevant to my work, which I think made it all the more enjoyable. I found learning behaviour management techniques very beneficial within this course. Learning in the classroom setting, then implementing these techniques practically in the workplace is a great way of reinforcing what I had learned.

After graduating, I’m hoping to continue working at my current workplace and do a diploma in Disability at Challenger Institute. Once qualified, I would like to remain in Australia to further continue my education, pursuing a degree in Nursing or possibly Occupational Therapy.

Perth is such a beautiful place, which looks even better in the sunshine! I love the fact that you can be in the hustle and bustle of Perth City and with twenty minutes travel be on the beautiful white sands of Scarborough beach. I love being able to go to the beach in my spare time. The people here in Perth, people I’ve encountered through work and through study have been extremely friendly and supportive throughout all my time here, making it that much easier to be away from home.

Since arriving, I have seen quite a lot of Perth. I visited Caversham Wildlife Park, numerous times! I went sandboarding on the dunes in Lancelin, canoeing on the Moore River and went on a camping trip north as far as Monkey Mia, which was amazing. I cycled around Rottnest Island, snorkelled in the bays off the island. I’ve been lucky to see a lot of things through my work, I went deep-sea fishing off Fremantle with a client as well as visiting Yanchep National Park and The Swan Valley Chocolate Factory and Animal Farm… All with so much left to explore!