I chose ANU for the reputation of its history degree in order to pursue a career in something I genuinely enjoyed. The thought that went into the design of classes, combined with the level of personal engagement and support from teaching staff, surpassed all of my previous experiences at other universities by a fair margin. It broadened my mind beyond what I thought I was capable of. The coursework challenged me on a continual basis and while I sometimes struggled, I came out the other side more confident, resilient and far more aware than I had been before I started. Through a College of Arts & Social Sciences scholarship, I was afforded the opportunity to undergo a short research trip to the United States Marine Corps Archives in Quantico, Virginia.
The most surprising thing about the course was that it didn’t just change the way I looked at history, but the way I looked at the world. The real value of a doing a humanities degree was that it developed my ability to think critically, which was honestly worth the entire experience alone.
Since finishing my degree, I have become part of a network of historians who offer me the support necessary to succeed in my field and I’ve even had the opportunity to publish parts of my research. Studying normally involves a healthy sense of accomplishment, mixed with a good deal of anxiety, frustration and a bit of self-doubt, but you’ll never forget the moment you hand in your last assignment, knowing you have achieved something that can never be taken away from you.