Name: Priyanka Mathur
Program: Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Early Childhood Education)
Best thing about studying through NZTC:
Receiving positive feedback from my colleagues at my home centre
New graduate Priyanka loves the variety of her role and is stepping into a full-time job, thanks to the ample field experience she gained as part of her program.
A career with rewards
A stint working with young children in a lower socio-economic area of Mumbai, India, inspired Priyanka Mathur to look into a career in early childhood education. “Watching the children change and grow was a privilege,” she says, “I had always wanted to be a psychologist, but thinking about social change, I knew it started with the children.”
The 24 year old embarked on a Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood Education) through NZTC’s office in India, then seized the opportunity to study the one-year Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Early Childhood Education) in New Zealand, as she already held a Bachelor’s degree.
A new country and way of life
Priyanka’s partner is a New Zealand citizen who was more than happy to relocate with her to Auckland in mid 2013. The calm, slow pace of life really agreed with her, and she was impressed by how highly the early childhood teaching profession was esteemed.
The benefits of learning online
Initially apprehensive about studying through NZTC Online, NZTC’s online learning environment, Priyanka immediately adapted to its ease and efficiency. “It was great being able to study in your own time and in your own environment so you can focus and be comfortable. If I ever had questions, I could just message my Lecturer directly instead of having to wait for the next class.”
Strong practical component an advantage
The best part of studying at NZTC was the requirement to work 16 hours a week at a licenced early childhood centre: “You can have everything on paper, but applying that is very different,” says Priyanka. “None of my friends who studied elsewhere had this requirement, and it’s definitely given me the advantage. I worked hard in my home centre; improving my practice and maintaining a positive relationship with my team, and I’m delighted to have secured a full-time role there.”
Priyanka also enjoyed getting out of her comfort zone on field practice placements at other centres, which exposed her to different age groups and allowed her more opportunity to apply what she was learning. “Just simple things like thinking, ‘why is that child putting things in his mouth all the time?’ and your instinct might to be keep taking it out. But as I studied, I learnt that’s how a child of his age explores the world; through putting things in his mouth and through his senses.”
Priyanka plans to apply for residency in New Zealand next year, and though she is still in the early days of her career, she already has aspirations to be a team leader.
In addition to having a high-quality qualification and practical experience, Priyanka says personal qualities of open mindedness, flexibility and a respectful and accepting attitude will ensure her continued success in the early childhood sector.
“Being a teacher makes you quite introspective; you’re constantly working on yourself, growing and learning,” Priyanka explains. “Watching children grow and question things is so rewarding. No two days are ever the same. I could never have an office job!”
Want to graduate from a quality early childhood teaching qualification with practical experience under your belt? Please call one of our friendly Enrolments team members today on (09) 520 4000 or email Enrolments to learn how.