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Support For You

Patti Nieuwenhuize discovered a passion for helping others while she was receiving help herself. At the Next Step Centre for Women at Ara, she participated in free personal development workshops designed to help women gain confidence and prepare for employment or study.

“I spent a year at the Next Step Centre to see if I liked study. It helped me decide to get into social work, but I wasn’t sure if I was capable of that level of study.”

Patti enrolled in a certificate-level course in human services but had mixed results. “My first result was a C-, with a comment that my writing wasn’t academic enough. So I sought help from Learning Services.”

With the help and support she received from the team at Learning Services, Patti’s results improved significantly. “I started getting better grades straight away,” she says. “In my first year I got two A+ marks and no more Cs.”

Patti went on to study the Bachelor of Social Work and is now the proud holder of a degree qualification. She says she wouldn’t have passed without the help of Learning Services. “They are friendly, approachable and they’re there to help.”

Her advice to other students who might be concerned about their ability to achieve their study goals is to use all the help that’s on offer. “Make use of the services if you’re struggling. It doesn’t have to be a barrier. You’re not a failure if you come and get extra help – it can only benefit you.”