After switching her degree, and then winning the AHRI Undergraduate Student Award, JCU Alumni Simone Vinton realised that you can accomplish anything if you put your mind to it.
When Simone was a little girl, she loved watching the American sitcom Parks and Recreation. The show focused on Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler), a confident deputy director of the Parks and Recreation Department in a small town in the United States. “I wanted to be like Leslie when I grew up. I have a fascination with how government works. I thought that it would be great if I could work for the public service,” Simone says.
Simone also deeply cared about improving people’s wellbeing. So, after working with Conservation Volunteers Australia in administration, customer service and project management for more than two years, Simone enrolled in a JCU Bachelor of Social Work.
However, in her third semester, she realised that her strengths lay in a different field. “I was also struggling to match the theories I learned with my own thinking, because in social work a lot depends on self-reflection.”
Not one to give up easily, Simone recalled her childhood dream of following in Leslie Knope’s footsteps. “I thought HR would allow me to work with people and help them, but also take advantage of my business skills,” Simone says. She decided to switch to a Bachelor of Business, majoring in Human Resource Management.
“From there, I just clicked with the degree. My lecturers were amazing, and I am still in contact with some of them,” Simone says. “When you've got lecturers who have worked in the field, and they have stories you can relate to, and they tell you about their own experiences, it really adds to the learning experience.”