Lauren Bakker

My name’s Lauren. I’m studying a Bachelor of Education at Victoria University in my third year. Victoria University is unique because everything is really hands-on, and they’ve got the networks and the links available to help you with the practical application of the things you’re learning. So they can help you with work experience and placements and things like that.


I went to East Timor on a study tour through Victoria University. We were given a study grant which helped to pay for the cost of getting there and that was also a credit unit as well so that counted towards my degree and took a little bit of time off my course and I was able to do that through the school holidays.


East Timor was challenging because everything that’s done there is done very differently to here. The systems aren’t in place for things to run smoothly so everything takes a little bit longer. It does get done but it’s all done very differently and that helped to open my eyes just to the way of living in different places and the way people operate. It gave me a chance to go overseas, to go to a country that I’d never been to before and to learn about teaching and learning in an international context. So it opened my eyes and broadened my horizons to the fact that I don’t know that I want to teach here, maybe I do want to teach overseas. And that’s something I wouldn’t have known had I not gone on the study tour and been given that opportunity.


When I finish my degree at Victoria University I hope to teach overseas. I’d like to teach English in a developing country and then perhaps work towards community development projects as well incorporating education into government and strategic planning.

I’ve met Steve Bracks, I’ve met Kirsty Sword Gusmao who is the Prime Minister’s wife of East Timor and that’s all been through links with Victoria University and opportunities that they’ve afforded to me.


Students should consider coming to Victoria University because the opportunities that you will receive are great and everything is really hands on so its not just sitting in a class room listening to a teacher, you really do get to practice what you’ve learnt and help prepare you for a career.

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