Just the beginning of her journey

Sasha Bain
  • Customer service officer

Between working part-time, raising a family, house renovations and numerous other commitments, Sasha Bain was able to achieve the New Zealand Certificate in Financial Services (Level 4) with Open Polytechnic. 

Working for a credit union as a customer services officer while she studied, Sasha was often the first point of contact for customer queries.  

In order to provide customers with accurate financial advice, Sasha wanted to expand on her existing skills, as well as keep up to date with what’s current in the financial industry.

“I wanted to become more knowledgeable in my field,” says Sasha, who has worked in the financial services industry for the past six years and is now embarking on a new career as a loans processing manager.

The right tools

Since completing the NZQA recognised qualification, Sasha has increased her knowledge of the financial service sector, which has benefited her career.  

“Before I began my studies, I had a good understanding of the different products and services available and how these met our customer needs,” says Sasha.

“Studying has allowed me to learn more about the framework of the financial services sector, consumer legislation and codes of practice.”  

Study anytime, anywhere

Being able to study at her own pace and have the freedom to plan precisely when she needed to study, all while balancing life’s commitments was what attracted Sasha to study with Open Polytechnic, New Zealand’s leading provider of online distance education.

“I could study at my own pace, I was able to log in and study during the week, and in the evenings once the kids were in bed, it was quiet, and I could focus completely on my study.”

“The study materials were easy to understand and were set out in a way that made it easy to plan my study,” says Sasha.

Learning advocates

Having a supportive employer who understands the importance of investing in staff development has been key for Sasha.

“My employer was very supportive of my studies,” she says. “They helped me decide which course would best suit my current position and future goals.”

As well as supportive employers, Sasha found the support offered by Open Polytechnic staff contributed to her success in completing the qualification.

“The support I received from the Open Polytechnic was great,” says Sasha. “The call centre was very helpful with my enrolment and in selecting my papers.”

Brian Pascall, Lecturer and Programme Leader for the School of Business & Enterprise was an individual that Sasha singled out. He took the time to talk and explain parts of the course until she understood the learning material.

“My tutor, Brian Pascall, was fantastic,” says Sasha. “I was able to email and call him to discuss modules I needed a little more help with.”

Further studies

This is just the beginning of Sasha’s study journey with Open Polytechnic.

“I really enjoyed studying, and would like to study more.”

“I am looking forward to studying again knowing that I can do this around my other commitments. I am yet to decide the course of my study, but I may look into the New Zealand Diploma in Legal Executive Studies.”

Sasha encourages those who are thinking about pursuing their studies to take the chance.

“Online learning is very user-friendly, there is plenty of support if you need it and you can tailor your study to suit your lifestyle.”  


I wanted to become more knowledgeable in my field.