Completing my degree in 12 months was immensely rewarding.
Despite a successful 20-year career that included ten years in event management, Sharon Pendleton felt the need to have a formal qualification.
“I wanted to cement my business and event knowledge and receive recognition for my experience through an academic qualification,” she says.
Sharon knew she could translate her existing skills and experience into qualification at Ara, because her sister had already done it. “My sister graduated through Ara’s Centre for Assessment of Prior Learning and she spoke highly of the process.”
After deciding to aim for a Bachelor of Applied Management specialising in event management, she got in touch with the Centre for Assessment of Prior Learning (CAPL) who set about assessing Sharon’s skills and experience from a career that had seen her work in a number of roles across a broad range of industries.
CAPL’s assessment resulted in a plan that would enable Sharon to achieve a degree in just 12 months. Her employer came to the party by paying all her course fees.
“It was great to be able to learn part-time at my own pace, and to draw on my tutor’s knowledge for guidance along the way,” she says. “I loved unpacking what I’d learned over my career and having the opportunity to go back and analyse what was happening at each place of employment from a broad business perspective.”
Sharon also enjoyed using her own experiences as reference points for her learning. “Using real examples was a great way to demonstrate my understanding of the course’s learning outcomes.”
Sharon says the biggest challenge of the process was not knowing if she’d done enough to pass, but as forecast, she successfully completed her degree in 12 months.
“I never thought I’d have the opportunity to gain a tertiary qualification due to the time I believed it would take. Completing my degree in 12 months was immensely rewarding. And the process of unpacking my prior knowledge to use as the basis for understanding each paper was an excellent way to learn and to retain my learnings.
Sharon intends to use her degree to assist her growth in her current workplace.