Nicole Dobson: Teaching

I liked the challenge to understand something in chemistry, and the way it all just works in such a logical manner…

"I began my Bachelor of Science in 2011 at the University of Melbourne. I thought veterinary science was an appealing option, but eventually, I began choosing more and more chemistry subjects. I liked the challenge to understand something in chemistry, and the way it all just works in such a logical manner when you eventually understand it.

After a gap year and volunteering in the USA, I entered my last year of the Bachelor of Science, majoring in Chemistry. I had a part time job in a laboratory as a blood processing technician and I chose to do the chemical research project subject in my final semester. On top of this I was volunteering approximately 3 times a week at tutoring organisations for students in housing commission and from refugee backgrounds. I enjoyed pushing myself and testing my limits, so I decided to enter the Masters of Teaching (Secondary) Internship program.

The wait to find out if I was placed in a school was too much, so I began appealing to schools in my area. Mount Alexander College was the first school I visited. After a quick meeting, they signed up for the program at the University of Melbourne and requested for me to be placed there. So two days before my last exam for my Bachelor of Science, I was in an intensive 7 week training program at the Melbourne School of Graduate Education (MGSE).

In 2016, I started working as a science teacher in a school with a vertical structure. I still use information I remember learning from my Bachelor of Science, and my confidence in chemistry was helpful when I was first finding my way as a teacher. Working with emerging adults is not without its challenges, and completing a Masters degree while working was demanding. The rewards are plentiful and unlike anything else I have experienced, and I could not have done it without my Bachelor of Science."

This article originally appeared in Engage on the Faculty of Science School of Chemistry website.

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