Se Yun Chong

Pursue what makes you happy and what genuinely sparks your passion. Cherish the memories you make with friends... Embrace all the moments, both wonderful and disappointing - there's a lesson to be learnt in all of those moments.

The seats of the Manning Clark lecture theatres may only be a memory now, but Se Yun still remembers vividly walking into her first Criminology lecture there and being in awe. By week 12 she remembers word had spread, and the lecturer was greeted not only by students in seats, but by students standing at the back and up the stairs, so popular had CRIM1001 under Dr Jason Payne become.

It's the people that make a university experience so memorable, whether the friends we meet or the teaching staff who guide us and foster our interest in a discipline. Se Yun fondly credits Jason along with fellow lecturer Dr Adam Masters and tutor Giverney ‘Giv’ Ainscough with her success in the Bachelor of Criminology, from which she is now graduating.

“Giv was my tutor for CRIM2003 (Controversies in Crime Control) and this was our first semester of remote learning experience after COVID-19 hit in 2019. Yet, she still managed to make the tutorials super engaging and fun. She genuinely cared about our learning and wellbeing. She was approachable, understanding, and thoughtful. It was a bonus that her pug Puddle always joined our tutorials as well! Dr Adam Masters was my lecturer for CRIM2002 (Organised Crime: Understanding the Underworld) and he was wonderful beyond words as well. He took the role of both lecturer and tutor and really made an effort to interact with his students. I enjoyed his course so much that I ended up taking CRIM2011 (Special Topics in Criminology: Art Crime) which he ran in 2020. Despite the pandemic, Dr Masters constantly made efforts to engage with us and recorded his feedback to us for our assessments which demonstrated the amount of effort and time he put into this course.”

It's the people too that made Se Yun feel so welcome and at home in Canberra. “My most fond memory of Canberra are the people.” Coming from a big international city, Canberra offers a smaller yet well connected community both on and off campus, with heaps of opportunities to socialise and hidden gems all around the city to explore, like foody attractions in Braddon only a short walk from campus, or cooking together with friends in Unilodge.

Criminology was a natural choice for Se Yun, a dedicated fan of the crime television genre. Crime isn’t always as slick and witty as The Blacklist, nor lectures as full of intrigue as How To Get Away with Murder, but shows like this and many others she’s a fan of piqued her interest in the discipline. What surprised her was how much broader criminology is than just the whodunit? It goes so much further, involving policy analysis and development, statistics, and theory. And it draws on a diverse variety of subjects to help us understand the complex behaviours and interactions of people.

Coupled with the Juris Doctor that Se Yun is due to complete in 2023, she is intrigued by the emerging issues and ambiguities emerging technology poses to the law. She wants to work in cybercrime, cybersecurity and with artificial intelligence.

“I see myself working in legal advisory using knowledge in Criminology, Law and Technology to solve complex issues alongside colleagues from numerous disciplines. I also see myself working pro bono on the side as a human rights lawyer later in my career.”

The pandemic posed a challenging time for Se Yun, who lost her casual job during the initial stages of the pandemic in 2020. It was challenging and stressful, but she directed her energy to those things she could control and pursue, like building professional experience on her CV. Over the past two years she has amassed a great deal of experience in Canberra in professional roles, working as a paralegal for law firms, and most recently joining The Salvation Army in a Government Relations role. In this role she ontributes expert advice and research that helps inform policy and advocacy. She also gained valuable experience participating in the Girls Takeover Parliament program, allowing her to shadow sitting Members of Parliament during sitting week.

Se Yun has words of optimism for students studying today, and those coming to ANU in the future.

“Pursue what makes you happy and what genuinely sparks your passion. Cherish the memories you make with friends - after graduating and starting a full-time job, it's difficult to see your friends. Embrace all the moments, both wonderful and disappointing - there's a lesson to be learnt in all of those moments.”

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Updated:  1 February 2022/Responsible Officer:  CASS Marketing & Communications/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications