My pathway to a Nursing career in Australia

Hi there! My name is Marrisa, and I’m currently in my final year of Bachelor of Nursing at Deakin University. I’m from Java, an island within the vast archipelago that is Indonesia. I first came to Australia in mid-2008, starting Year 9 in Term 3.

When I was in high school, I studied a subject called ‘Human Studies’, in which we learnt about first aid. I was fascinated by it, and I remember thinking to myself, “How amazing would it be if I can do something related to first aid as a job?”. The school invited an instructor from St John Ambulance (SJA) to talk to us about first aid, and I remember expressing my interest in joining them. Now, almost 7 years on, I’m still a member of SJA, and I enjoy every event I’m sent to!

How amazing would it be if I can do something related to first aid as a job?

Initially, being part of SJA drove me to become a paramedic. However, during Year 11, I realised that nursing might be a better degree for me to pursue, since I love interacting with people and it opens up (arguably) a wider scope of practice than paramedicine. When I told my parents about this, they were very confused since nursing is not a very popular profession back home. But after seeing the course structure Deakin offered and how advanced the Australian medical system is, my parents agreed that nursing is the best option for me.

After passing my clinical skills test!

After passing my clinical skills test!

Nursing is not an easy course, and there were times when I returned home from a placement both mentally and physically exhausted. Despite that, I can definitely say that I’ve had more good memories than bad ones. For example, when I was on a rehabilitation placement, one of my patients taught me how to knit and she even made a scarf for me during her free time.

Another great memory was when I went to a mental health placement at a children’s hospital, where I used games to increase patient responsiveness and compliance. During my placements, I’ve been fortunate enough to experience a lot of different settings.

Last day of our 2nd year Nursing placement at Deakin

Last day of our 2nd year Nursing placement at Deakin

As I am writing this, I’m waiting for my final examination results to be released, and I’m a few weeks away from the last placement of my degree. When I finish my course, I plan to take a semi-gap year to compose myself and plan for the future. With my sister also in Australia studying Year 12, a permanent residency application underway, and my parents planning to potentially move to Australia with me next year, I think it’s wise to take a break and sort everything out first before jumping into full-time work!

If you love to interact with people and you are fascinated by the medical side of things just like me, then nursing may be a degree for you to consider. It’s not going to be easy, but the feeling of seeing your patients getting better day by day, and eventually seeing them being discharged makes up for any challenging times you might have.

For further information about studying at Deakin and to view the many degrees on offer, visit our international student page.

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