Student Testimonials: How I got my first job after studying at ACAP

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Shirley Hynes

Graduate Diploma of Counselling Student

"Returning to study at an age when many of my peers were taking up golf and buying caravans was a rewarding experience"

I am a mother and grandmother, and returning to study at an age when many of my peers were taking up golf and buying caravans was a rewarding experience. My two young grandchildren were there with their mother Anita to see Grandma's graduation. I hope my academic achievements will inspire my grandchildren to aim high with their own education.

As part of my studies at ACAP, I completed work placement at Chelsea Community Support Center. I was thrilled to be asked to stay on, as a paid worker, after my placement and course ended.

Now that I have experience, and with the assistance and guidance of a supervisor, I am also currently in the process of establishing a solo counselling practice. With the ambition to become an accredited grief counselor, I'm satisfied that the clients I have seen to date have arrived in a 'better head space' than at first contact. I feel that this is an achievement worthy of the effort involved in becoming a professional counselor.

Sam Stabler

Graduate Diploma Of Counselling Student.

"To get a job I had to create my own opportunities."

QuIHN - offers individual clinical counselling for people whose lives are affected by substance use and related mental health and/or parenting and family issues that may be present.

I saw my placement with QuIHN as my best opportunity to get started as a counselor.  I was proactive and got involved in everything I could.  I sat in on initial screens and organised the filing cabinet. The more I did, the more they trusted me to do, and they were incredibly supportive.  

In a bad economy with lots of competition it was hard to see how I could make it into my first job. I had to create my own opportunities and my placement was the best chance I had - so I threw myself into it.

After my placement I was kept on as a volunteer. Now I am working there as a counselor. My first day was yesterday!

Thanks for your support placement team - you guys have been great!


Eleanor Mann

Counselling Graduate

"I was employed in my dream job through my placement"

Birthing Rights Australia

"I am a mother of four children.  I started studying a Bachelor of Applied Social Science (Counselling) by distance with ACAP soon after my fourth child was born,  and I was employed in my dream job as a Counselor a week before I finished my degree, 3 years later! I thoroughly enjoyed studying at ACAP, and found all the course material to be highly relevant and applicable when working in the field, and all the lecturers to be inspiring and helpful.  During my final placement I applied for a job nearby my home, as a counselor working with parents and families, and got the job!"


Kerrie Thompson

Counselling Graduate

 "I was presented with job opportunities from both my placement agencies"

Victims of Crime Assistance League Newcastle - Positively supporting the needs of people affected by crime and similar tragedy.

The student placement experience is an excellent opportunity to gain insight into the counselling profession, and a chance to use and develop skills and theoretical knowledge. Developing clear and achievable learning goals with my supervisor greatly helped in tailoring the nature of my placement work, and we often referred back to the goals to check that I was gaining the most from my experience.

While placement is designed to develop learned skills and theoretical knowledge, it also can be a great deal more. Being a student in a busy organisation required me to take responsibility for my learning. It required motivation, and a willingness to participate. I found that being willing to complete tasks,  getting involved with the daily routine, and asking questions helped me to fit in to both organisations I worked with. I made an effort to build rapport with staff, Student Testimonial: How I got my fursand I found that when something interesting was happening in another department, I would be invited to participate. This provided an excellent opportunity to discover the different roles and requirements of both organisations.

At the end of my final placement, I was presented with job opportunities from both organisations. I took the employment opportunity that suited my needs and career goals, and was told that my willingness to get involved with the organisations, as opposed to just being ‘a student completing placement hours’ was a deciding factor in offering me employment. While working to achieve learning goals is the main objective, student placement offers wonderful opportunities to get involved with and expand knowledge of the industry.