JCU Teachers College student chats with OzTREKK

OzTREKK student Lyndsie Chisholm is living her dream in Cairns, Queensland. Currently enrolled in James Cook Universitys Graduate Diploma of Education (One to Nine) program, Lyndsie took some time out of her busy schedule to share her experiences Down Under—and her reaction to winning the OzTREKK Scholarship draw!

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OzTREKK student Lyndsie Chisholm feeding a female Eclectus parrot

Why did you want to become a teacher?
Since the age of 5 I have dreamt of becoming a teacher. Teaching children is my passion and watching children learn and grow in the classroom excites me. Over the years I have intentionally participated in countless positions to help me fulfill my dream of teaching.

What made you choose Australia as the place to earn your degree?
Australia has always been on my bucket list! So why not travel and study?

What made you choose JCU?
JCU representatives came to my university in Ontario with OzTREKK’s Study in Australia Fair and I spoke with them, along with a bunch of other universities in Australia, but the ladies at JCU were full of passion and you could tell they truly loved JCU. This made me love JCU as well and I applied that very night!

What’s the course like, and what’s a “day in the life of Lyndsie” like?

I am at JCU typically three times a week. My program is a one-year intensive, so I am also teaching at a high school for four weeks and in a Year 2 class for 10 weeks, and I love it! I am also working three days a week so I am very busy! It is wonderful though; I have had the opportunity to meet so many new and amazing people!

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Cairns is beautiful!
What has been your favourite part? Least favourite part?
My favourite part has been the beautiful Cairns weather and the amazing people I have met. I don’t like being so far away from my family.

What has been the most unexpected or surprising thing about being in Australia?
I was most surprised by the difference in food here compared to back home! Some things are just not the same—like salad dressing, cheese, and Kraft Dinner!

What was your reaction to winning the OzTREKK Scholarship draw?
When I found out I won the draw I was sitting on my balcony after teaching all day and I was very surprised! I don’t win things—ever! I yelled to my boyfriend, “We can eat this week!” Ha ha! I was very thankful for winning!

About JCU Teachers College

The School of Education is the largest at JCU and has a 40-year history of teacher education in north Queensland.

James Cook University provides the option of doing a portion of your practicum placement in a rural and remote location and staff encourages students to take part of this unique opportunity to work with children from different needs and geographical circumstances.

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Lyndsie and her boyfriend enjoying SCUBA diving

Graduate Diploma of Education

The Graduate Diploma of Education at JCU is designed for those people who have completed an undergraduate degree and now wish to qualify as a teacher. The Primary stream of this program qualifies graduates to teach students from Kindergarten through to Grade 6, while the Secondary program qualifies students to teach grades 7-12.

Program: Graduate Diploma of Education
Location: Townsville, Queensland
Semester intake: February
Duration: 1 year
Application deadline: Although there is no strict application deadline for either of these programs, it is recommended that students apply at least three months prior to the program start date. Doing so will provide students with a sufficient amount of time to complete the assessment and pre-departure process.

Entry Requirements

To be eligible for admission into the JCU Graduate Diploma of Education program, you must have
  • successfully completed, at minimum, a three-year undergraduate degree from a recognized post-secondary institution; and
  • have achieved a 65% average or above.
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Lyndsie and koala friend
Graduate Diploma of Education (Primary and One to Nine programs) 
Applicants must meet the requirements of two teaching areas. Applicants must have completed four courses in each teaching area within their undergraduate degree. Two out of the four courses in each teaching area must have been completed at the second-year level or above.

Graduate Diploma of Education (Secondary)
Applicants must meet the requirements of two teaching areas.


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