Discovering new directions

Portrait of Anne Reed in scrubs
I have never actually believed I could work in the [health] industry and be a team leader, but with VU's help, I have discovered I can.

Anne Reed
Certificate III in Health Services Assistance HLT33115

As part of our Frontline Heroes mini series, we sat down with Anne Reed who worked at Melbourne’s largest vaccination hubs after completing the Certificate III in Health Services Assistance HLT33115 at Victoria University (VU).

What made you decide to pursue this qualification?

During the lockdown last year, my job of 17 years stopped. I wanted to study a qualification that led to employment in an industry able to withstand lockdowns. I wanted to help people and contribute to the healthcare industry, so this was the ideal qualification to start with.

Why did you choose to study at VU?

After researching many study options, I decided VU Polytechnic [former name of our TAFE division] was the perfect fit for me because of the great student testimonials, general reviews on the Polytechnic, and high success rates.

Where has your studies taken you?

Directly out of placement, I was hired to work in Melbourne’s largest vaccination hubs. On day one of the vaccine rollout, I started at Melbourne Airport before moving to the Sunshine Vaccination Hub.

By implementing the skills I have learned through my course, I am now working 6 nights a week as one of the Team Leaders of the Patient Service Assistants. I not only complete the duties of a Patient Service Assistant but coordinate and manage staff.

I found the course extremely interesting and the teaching staff were phenomenal. I have never had a teacher so engaged and connected with her class. She made me want to excel and feel like I had the ability to succeed. She went out of her way to help everyone and made sure if you put in the work, you would pass. I found the course itself very well planned and structured, even during the challenging time of eLearning.

How valuable was undertaking industry placements while studying?

I undertook placement at Northern Hospital, which was fantastic. It was very well planned, to the point we were able to experience every aspect of the hospital – from kitchen, to CARPS, to the work in the ward. Every day was different and the skills learned have helped a great deal.

What is the most valuable thing you got out of your studies?

Knowledge and self-confidence is by the far the most valuable thing I have gained. I have never actually believed I could work in the industry and be a team leader, but with VU Polytechnic’s help, I have discovered I can.

What would you tell another student who was thinking about studying TAFE at VU?

Do it! I truly loved studying with VU. My life has taken a whole new direction since deciding to study my course. I am experiencing things I never thought I would, including helping the healthcare industry and protecting the community.

I am looking to further my studies and will definitely be studying through VU again in the future. I have discovered I still enjoy learning and if I truly want to succeed in a course, I can, and I will.

We express our thanks and gratitude towards frontline heroes like Anne for the tremendous work they do to protect the community.