The uni options that are easing stressed parents' concerns - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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The uni options that are easing stressed parents' concerns

4 Oct 2019

Transitioning from high school to university is a big step, not just for students, but for their parents, too. Parents worry about their teenager’s ability to get into the university course of their choice, and are faced with navigating a barrage of new courses and a tertiary system that has changed radically since they were at uni.

Many parents also worry that their child won’t be equipped for the ever-evolving and unpredictable job market of the future.

Careers expert Edwin Trevor-Roberts, CEO of Trevor-Roberts Brisbane, says the stress is real.

“Many job categories are changing, and there are millions of jobs that don’t even exist yet,” he says.

“Without a crystal ball, choosing the right university for their children, or the right study options, makes many parents pretty stressed.”

While it used to be the case that “this degree equals that job”, that’s no longer the case, the careers expert says.

“Many of us grew up assuming we would be in one field and one job for life. Tomorrow’s university graduates need to be able to apply multiple skills across multiple areas.”

Fortunately for parents, there are more tertiary options now than ever before, with universities opening new campuses to allow more young Australians to access higher education.

In 2020, USC will open a new campus at Petrie, north of Brisbane.

USC Moreton Bay will form the heart of a dynamic civic, cultural and educational precinct planned by Moreton Bay Regional Council and delivering jobs and community facilities as well as a new study option for the region.

Dr Margarietha Scheepers, Senior Lecturer, Entrepreneurship, USC Business School, says that the university works to produce students who are lifelong learners and agile workers.

“We’re focusing on delivering graduates with the skills, imagination and ambition needed to support new industries of the future,” she says.

Edwin Trevor-Roberts describes the workers of tomorrow as “boundary-less”.

“That includes geographical boundaries – working in more than one city or country during their career; and occupational boundaries – working across career and company boundaries.

“A good education, then, has become about learning how to learn and rapidly acquire new skills. We come back to the idea of employability – which university and which course gives a student the most options?

“Parents should be looking for a university that develops critical thinking, builds experience and offers applied learning. A good university prepares tomorrow’s graduates for uncertainty. With an increasingly fluid job market, many students will tend to chop and change their study options, so multiple sites and undergraduate offerings are key.”

The universities of the future are not ivory towers, and the benefits of establishing strong relationships within students’ local region can’t be underestimated, Dr Scheepers says.

“It’s about sharing of knowledge, both ways, as well as making important connections.”

She says universities can play a part in building strong, sustainable regional communities of the future, through their students. In May, small business owners, as well as current USC students, researchers and teachers came together to develop entrepreneurial ideas at Moreton Bay’s FounderFest.

The action-filled event of 35 hours ended with a Shark Tank-style pitching event, with $8000 in prizes up for grabs.

USC Moreton Bay will open for Semester 1, 2020, and enrolments are now open. Prospective students can also apply for scholarships, including Moreton Bay Regional Council scholarships worth $8000 per year.

This article was originally published by News Corp. You can read the full story here.

Artwork of what USC Moreton Bay campus will look like

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