“I began with a double degree in Psychology and Criminology and did this purely for efficiency. One degree in three years, or two degrees in four years. Seemed like the way to go. However it wasn’t until I started the courses that I realised that criminology absolutely fascinated me.
“I think I was always drawn to the sociological approach to academics, over the scientific methods utilised in psychology. I thoroughly enjoyed psychology, however as my fellow students could attest, I wasn’t very good at it, so I dropped it and stuck with crim.
“I also had the opportunity in a number of courses to partake in tours of a police station, the ACT Magistrate’s court, the Alexander Maconochie Centre and the Goulbourn Supermax prison.
“I surprisingly enjoyed the academic side of uni as much as the social. The biggest positive to the criminology degree over all the other courses was the calibre of the lecturers and their ability to make every course feel like it was tailored and directed to me as an individual.
“The smaller class sizes certainly helped, I will admit, but I honestly believe that for those individuals that really made the effort, you could see the tutors and lecturers bend over backwards to make your time enjoyable.
“Outside of the classroom I had the privilege of creating, formalising and running the ANU Criminology Society. I was lucky enough to have an incredibly supportive team around me when we did that with a great deal of success. This led to a phenomenal opportunity with the ANU Cybercrime Observatory where a few of us were able to work with the Office of the Children’s E-Safety Commissioner on an academic online child safety report. Definitely a highlight of my time at ANU.”
Matthew graduated in December 2015 and now works for ACT Corrective Services’ Throughcare Unit, a prisoner reintegration initiative.