Mikayla's first year teaching adventure


From the very beginning of her teaching degree, Mikayla Mason was thinking about how she could best set herself up for employment as a graduate teacher. It soon became clear to Mikayla that looking west was one of the best ways to secure a rewarding teaching position after completing her degree.

From internship to employment

Stepping outside the comfort zone of her coastal hometown of Hervey Bay, Mikayla completed a professional experience placement at Isis District State High School in the north coast town of Childers and an internship at Roma State College in the Darling Downs South West region.

'I was amazed at the opportunities available for beginning teachers. From that moment [on her professional experience placement at Isis], I knew that I wanted to work in a school out west where I would get more opportunities than I ever would if I remained in a major city.'

Mikayla was then offered a permanent position as a mathematics and business teacher at Roma State College, a position she took-up at the beginning of 2018.

Opportunities abound

With classes from Year 8 to Year 12, and teaching subjects that were new to the College, Mikayla was able to sink her teeth into the full experience of life as a secondary school teacher.

'How often does a first-year teacher get the opportunity to teach Mathematics C?' Mikayla said.

While challenging at times, Mikayla said she received an immense amount of support since beginning at the College.

'Although I teach a lot of subjects, there is no shortage of support. I know that I can always talk to my Head of Campus, the Heads of Department or other teachers. Whether it is about curriculum, behaviour management or general questions, there is always someone to help. I have had a lot of teachers and mentors observe or profile my lessons, which I find is a great way to get feedback.'

A country welcome

Mikayla said the best thing about living in a rural location is being involved in her new community.

During her internship, Mikayla made the most of every opportunity, observing teachers, getting to know the students and taking part in extra-curricular activities. Mikayla also plays touch football weekly—a great way to socialise with members of her community.

Finding confidence

Perhaps most importantly, Mikayla said that her experience so far has taught her to back herself and trust that she knows what she's doing. Finding this confidence as a beginning teacher, through the professional opportunities offered by her position and with the support of her school and local community, Mikayla's teaching career is off to a great start!

If you are considering where to complete your next professional experience placement, or thinking about an adventure teaching in a rural, regional or remote community, come to our next career fair.

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Last updated 01 July 2020