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Public Policy: From books to practice

Page last published: 05 Feb 2014

After working for more than a decade in community services doing social work for women, children and families, Kathryn wanted to change the direction of her career from frontline to policy. She knew she needed to increase her knowledge and understanding of the public policy process and decided to study a postgraduate course.

In 2012, Kathryn started to explore postgraduate study opportunities and looked for a policy course that will help her achieve her career goals but be  flexible enough to allow her to  work full-time and spend time with her son and husband.

Master of Politics and Public Policy

Kathryn shares, "I chose to study Master of Politics and Public Policy at Macquarie because it is accessible and flexible – there are options for online and face-to-face study. The course also offers the potential to study a range of elective within the wider Arts area, for example international policy, human rights, politics and law, alongside the core public policy subjects."

Even as a distance student, Kathryn feels that there are so many opportunities to grow and learn at Macquarie.

"The online environment at Macquarie is user friendly and each unit includes resources, lectures and readings."

Expertise and support

"Outside of my degree I have completed a number of postgraduate writing workshops which are run through the library, are free, and have provided me with the tools to make my academic performance better. My professional writing skills have benefited too."

"I also take part in Macquarie's Global Leadership Program, an extracurricular program which offers students the opportunity to learn about and to experience global issues through an in-depth and participatory approach."

"My Macquarie experience has been one of learning, growth and support. I have learnt so much about my field, grown as a professional and as an individual, and have been supported by an experienced team of lecturers and staff."

Career advancement

Halfway through her second semester at Macquarie, Kathryn was accepted for a position as a policy officer at the Department of Premier and Cabinet. She believes this is a significant advancement of her career.

"My manager tells me that I was a standout candidate for a number of reasons: my passion for child protection policy, my significant amount of frontline knowledge, and the fact that I am studying for master in politics and public diplomacy," shared Kathryn.

"I feel fortunate to have learnt from some of the leading experts in the fields of public policy and politics. I have gained an excellent appreciation of theory and public policy, and since beginning this course, I have had many opportunities to put these theories into practice in my daily work as a Policy Offer. Over the next few years I hope to continue to work in the public policy sphere and increase my knowledge of social policy in Australia."

Kathryn shared more about her postgraduate studies during the Faculty of Arts Information Evening in October 2013 (video recording below).

Interested to study Master of Politics and Public Diplomacy? Learn more about this postgraduate course from our Courses website.

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