Patricia Midori is living in Spain and working in an office all day. As a proponent of careful environmental management and sustainability she would like to change her life and work in an area related to her passion.
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Do Thi Xuan Mai lives and works in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam but has just completed graduate studies with the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand.
“The course was recommended to me by my then employer. Many people at the company had done the qualification and said it was good.”
She says a key thing for her was the flexible approach. One year she gave birth to her youngest child just 1 week before the exam so was unable to sit - but the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand allowed her to transfer her exam to the following year and sit then.
She says studying with a provider outside her country of residence was not an issue, as the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand was well set up to provide materials and advice at a distance.
“The facilities are very good. Most of my study was done on line or from books and course materials sent by the Open Polytechnic. I could submit my assignments online and could discuss things with my tutor by email or by on-line chat. They were also flexible about helping me fit things in around work for example allowing me extensions when I got busy.”
Xuan Mai said she used the on-line support systems such as the library and found it easy and quick.
Fitting in study when working and managing a family was always going to be a challenge, but by working at nights after the children were asleep and by keeping to a plan. Xuan Mai managed to get her diploma in just 4 years.
“It was hard – especially when there were assessments and examinations but I think the result is worth it.
“I would recommend this way of studying for people who like me are needing to balance their family, their work and study to get a qualification. I think it gives me an international background in my field and helps me when I am talking to foreigners and with my employers.
“I think the support the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand provides with the online training and the ability to discuss things with the tutor by email, or online chat makes it easier to succeed.”