CAREERS // Studying & Working In The Southern Highlands
Bowral Resident Thomas Mooney Shares His Story
At the end of the high school year, it’s not unusual to see a mass exodus of young adults heading to the bright lights of Sydney, the uni campuses of Canberra, down to the coast to the Gong to study and work or even further afield. In the past, it’s been hard for the younger generation to choose higher education, do a degree they are really keen on and support themselves with work in the Highlands, but that has changed with the introduction of University of Wollongong’s Southern Highlands campus.
We spoke to UOW graduate and Bowral resident, Thomas Mooney about choosing to study at UOW which allowed him to work, learn and stay local.
What degree did you do?
I graduated in 2019 with a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Marketing and Human Resource Management.
Why did you choose University of Wollongong?
Their Southern Highlands campus meant I could keep the job I had in Bowral and it reduced my commute to and from study.
Uni life can be pretty hectic! How did you go?
I wanted to make the most of what UOW had to offer, so signed up for a lot of extra activities and interesting things. I ended up receiving the UOWx award in recognition of my extra-curricular involvement. I said yes to things I really had no idea about! And ended up with the UOWx Ambassador role for the Southern Highlands campus and joined the UOW Mentor Program in 2019.
Sounds busy!! How did you manage it all?
My time management had to be very well planned to balance my full-time study load. As a result, I came out of UOW with far more experience and well prepared for the world of work.
How did UOW support you?
I got lots of support from many different educators and departments. They helped with things from daily study to extra-curricular activities to what I should be valuing when looking for a job after my studies and they helped with the job application process too. Tania Goodman is the Regional Careers Consultant. Her advice and guidance was crucial for me getting a job after I had completed my degree. She was also a strong influence from an early stage of my life at UOW. And of course, my awesome network of family and friends who helped me get through three years of study!
What do you recommend other students looking to study at UOW do?
Enrol and get involved. I said yes to a lot of stuff and looking back, it had such a positive impact not only on my time at uni but in preparing me for the job I have now. The extra-curricular activities I did – UOW Mentoring, Career Accelerate, the Univative program and In2Uni Mentoring prepare me really well for the working world.
So what are you doing now?
I secured a full time job within two months of my graduation. My marketing role is with an invoice finance company called Apricity. Their head office is here in Bowral, which is where I’m based, and they have offices across Australia and in New Zealand. It’s been great to keep it all local – my life with friends and family, my study and now my work.
UOW Southern Highlands is part of the University of Wollongong multi-campus regional network providing access to a world-class university education to the local community. The Southern Highlands campus provides a co-operative learning environment and a high standard of academic excellence, with leading-edge technology that provides interactive access to other UOW campuses. Find out more here.