A family health problem became the catalyst for Kusal Yasintha’s future nursing career.
“My grandmother had a medical incident back home in Colombo and the doctors and nursing team were so professional, yet caring and compassionate, that they got me interested in nursing,” Kusal, an international student from Sri Lanka, says.
“My aim is to specialise in neurological nursing because it’s the area where my grandmother received her care, so I’d like to understand more about it,” he says.
Kusal completed a two-year Diploma of Nursing at Victoria University Polytechnic – the award-winning TAFE division of Victoria University (VU) – in 2018, enabling him to transfer straight into the second year of VU’s Bachelor of Nursing.
“I have friends who came before me to VU and they said the nursing program at VU is very good for the price compared to other universities.
The course is so practical, you get to go into the labs and learn skills and at the end of every semester you go on a placement so it gives you an idea what the job will be like.
“For example, in my first semester I studied mental health and then I went into a placement in a mental healthcare facility so I was able to apply what I just learnt in class to the real world.”
Studying at one of Australia’s most culturally diverse universities – and living in one of the world’s most liveable cities – Kusal says his advice to students thinking about studying overseas is to “go for it”.
“Even though I’m from another country, everyone at VU is so friendly.
“You have everything from writing help to counselling so if you get lost, there are people here who can help you.
“Melbourne is always alive, there’s a great vibe in the city. My advice to international students is to go for it – it’s the experience of a lifetime!”