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'Filling the gap': Why Muriel chose to study in the NT

This article appears in: Health, High school to uni
CDU student Muriel Scholz smiling at the camera

Muriel always felt her calling was within the health sector. Growing up in Katherine, she saw first-hand the unique health challenges faced in the Northern Territory, and was keen to explore a career in the sciences. Unsure of her exact direction, Muriel was drawn to the wide range of majors and flexibility offered by CDU’s health science courses.

Despite not knowing her exact career path, Muriel had a long-held dream of achieving a higher education,

“I have always wanted to have an education, and I know that we are among those privileged to have the opportunity to do this,” she says.

“I think that the choice a person makes to go through this process is one of self-development. For me, higher education was always something I knew I wanted to do and have as a personal achievement.”

After attending Open Day and speaking with CDU’s careers office and academic staff at the College of Health and Human Sciences, Muriel made her decision. She enrolled in a Bachelor of Science and has gone on to study a second degree, a Bachelor of Health Science with the option to major in either Nutrition, Speech Pathology or Occupational Therapy.

“The courses offer the professional aspect in science that I was looking for,” she says. “I also appreciate that the specialties offered are need-based around the NT, in attempts to fill these gaps in the health sector.”

Flexibility in every way

Muriel was drawn to the flexibility in the structure of her first degree, a Bachelor of Science. She relished in the wide range of learning opportunities on offer.

“The Bachelor of Science offered the chance to try a range of different electives which was ideal for me,” she says. “It seemed to tick all the boxes I was looking for. I had no need to search elsewhere, so I didn’t,” she says.

Now thriving in her second degree, a Bachelor of Health Science, Muriel is planning a career in the Northern Territory.

“I plan to begin working here in my community for my community. I enjoy the idea of humanitarian aid and have some volunteer experience that I really enjoyed,” she says.

After graduating, Muriel plans to build on this experience and has big plans for the future.

“When the time is right I would love to go abroad and offer my help where I can,” she says. “Being able to travel, learn more about different cultures and help others would be a great achievement that I hope I can someday realise.”

CDU student Muriel Scholz smiling at the camera

A vibrant on-campus social scene

For some, the move from Katherine to Darwin might be challenging. But Muriel took it all in her stride, thankful for the open arms of the greater CDU community.

Deciding to move on campus to the International House Darwin (IHD), Muriel has settled into the place she now calls ‘home’.

“I have met many people, especially international and exchange students that I have lived amongst, and made many memories and meaningful friendships,” she says. “I’ve started the year with some great new friends and look forward to what comes next.”

“Darwin is a community that I feel comfortable and proud to be a part of,” she says.

Muriel is also thankful for the supportive network that comes with living on-campus. “Living with fellow students makes it easy to organise study groups,” she says, adding, “I have an abundant social network that stems from the IHD community and reaches out into the classroom. I have access to endless resources - from the library, to the staff, to the online databases."

Gratitude and giving back 

Muriel is thankful for the diversity she has encountered at CDU. “I have shared my classrooms with people two or even three times my age, recent high school leavers, soon-to-be mums, people from across the globe and some from the same town as me,” she says.

And while studying at CDU has given so much to Muriel, she has given much back to the community herself. “I feel I can be helpful as a local with some insight into the different cultures around us,” she says.

Muriel is forthcoming with her advice for unsure Year 12’s, a position she has experienced for herself. “Definitely attend events where the CDU opens and showcases to the public, like Open Day and orientation. Talking to current students in the area you are interested in will also offer great insight," says Muriel. 

"Another option could be to just give it a go, see how you feel and if it isn’t for you that’s okay. Census dates give you the flexibility to change plans if needed,” she says.

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