Mater nurse Jaclyn had been working in HR for more than 15 years before embarking on her career as a nurse. Drawn to the idea of helping others and giving back to her community, Jaclyn heard about Mater Education’s Diploma of Nursing program at a Brisbane careers expo, and was instantly excited by the idea.
“I’d been thinking about studying to become a nurse for a long while, but I had no idea that I could actually gain my nursing qualifications on-site, in a real hospital-based setting. For me, it was the perfect way to learn. I was on board straight away,” Jaclyn said.
Jaclyn says that Mater Education’s Diploma of Nursing program ‘ticked all of the boxes’ for her.
Throughout the course, Jaclyn studied and trained in Mater’s exceptional hospitals and simulation facilities, where she was able to learn best-practice clinical skills and gain real life, hands-on experience.
“The simulation training was fantastic,” Jaclyn says.
“It was held in the old Mater Mothers’ Hospital and was just like walking into a real hospital ward.”
“The oxygen and pumps, medication room, blood fridge, all of the equipment was there and it was run just like a regular ward. That practical, on-the-job training sticks in your mind much more than the theoretical stuff.”
Jaclyn graduated from her Diploma of Nursing three years ago and says she found it very easy to find a job.
“I had a foot in the door and met a lot of people during my placements, so I made some really good connections in the hospital. My teachers became my referees and my advocates which was fantastic,” she said.
After starting her nursing career in Mater’s cardiac ward, Jaclyn later went on to work in endoscopy before more recently moving over to Mater’s cardiac lab.
“There is so much to learn and I’m really enjoying what I’m doing,” she said.
“One of the reasons I was interested in nursing was because I wanted to feel like I had a place in the world that allowed me to help and give back, and nursing gives me that and so much more.”
Jaclyn says she was drawn to the many and varied career options that are available through nursing.
“There are so many different career paths and options in nursing. It opens doors to so many other wonderful opportunities and roles, so it’s perfect for me.”
While she admits she was nervous at the idea of studying and changing careers, Jaclyn says the educators and facilitators at Mater made her feel supported every step of the way.
“It’s a really fantastic environment to be immersed in. The course is run by such an experienced team. The educators are so patient, informative and helpful—they want to see you succeed. There was always someone there to provide me with support and advice whenever I needed it,” Jaclyn said.
“Knowing that I am able to care for my patients and make them feel safe and at ease, and that I can put a smile on someone’s face when they’re having a bad day—as cliche as it sounds, I really do love that.
Looking ahead, Jaclyn says she is interested in becoming a registered nurse and would love to go ‘full circle’ and teach with Mater Education Diploma.
“Nursing is such a diverse area, it’s all about finding your niche and what you want from it—it’s so rewarding,” she said.
“I highly recommend Mater Education's Diploma of Nursing. To me it felt like an 18 month job interview—during those 18 months you get training, practical experience, a whole bunch of skills and simultaneously you get a foot in the door to become a qualified, paid nurse.