Student interview: Joanne WalkerPosted on 16/01/2019 by Jess O'Connor
Every month, we interview a Study From Home student (past or present) to provide insight on what it’s like to study from home with ITC
This month, we interviewed Joanne Walker from Te Kuiti. Joanne is a dairy farmer turned tourism student with a huge passion for travel.
Joanne has overcome many personal challenges to be where she is today, and we’re so proud of her for pursuing her tourism dreams. Her story is an inspiration to all; we hope you enjoy it.
1. What inspired you to study from home with ITC?
After giving up 20 years of dairy farming in 2015, I had to make a decision about what I would do next. I have always loved travelling and thought that re-training in this field would be perfect for me, but instead I purchased a business in town. Unfortunately this business failed due to lack of support and I ended up shutting the doors in 2017. I had to put my plans to study travel on hold again as my father had an accident, and I then had to find a part-time job that worked around his farm work, as well as providing an income to support my two children (I am a single mum). Finally, in 2018, I was able to pursue my passion and jumped at the chance to enrol at ITC.
2. What inspired you to study travel and tourism?
I just love to travel and experience new cultures and adventures. Hearing about other people’s travel adventures is great, but I get so jealous because I want to travel all the time but unfortunately finances don’t allow this. When I gave up dairy farming I had no formal training in any field (except a certificate in Hairdressing), as I had been hands on dairy farming for almost 20 years. Giving it up was a huge and scary decision as I knew finding a job with no actual qualifications at my age, as a single mum would not be the easiest thing to do. I did purchase a local business which I knew was financially risky from day one but it was a great learning curve in customer service and how wholesale/retail works so even though it didn’t work out it has a positive outcome in this regard. Always in the back of my mind though I was thinking about studying travel and tourism as a way to move forward and branch out.
3. What is your dream job?
Employment options are limited in my home town. I would like to become a travel consultant and I would eventually love to work from home…or even on the road providing a service to clients who find it hard to get into town during normal working hours. I don’t really know what my dream job would be as long as I could get the opportunity to travel and explore new activities and places with it. I would give anything a go until I found the job I knew I was perfect for.
4. What do you find most enjoyable about studying from home so far?
Flexibility and the time commitments aren’t too strenuous. I could have finished this course much, much sooner but sometimes life takes over. With work and kids and helping out on the farm when needed, the ITC Distance Learning has been a great way to get study done but not bee too pressured by time.
5. Do you have any advice for students who are thinking about studying from home?
I would say go for it and don’t over think things. Even though the time needed to complete the course looks daunting when you start, many of the Units can be finished well ahead of schedule and getting ahead early helps later on if something happens and you cannot study for a week or so. It is a great way to get a qualification while working or being a mother or both and the satisfaction at the end of it is well worth the effort put in.
Are you inspired by Joanne’s story? Discover the flexibility of studying from home yourself; we have courses starting in February 2019. Get in touch today to find out how we can help you kickstart your career in airline, travel and tourism.Posted in Inspiration and motivation, Student Success, Study From Home Tips, Tourism Spotlight | Leave a reply