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Your Stories – Meet Eleanor

El standing in the courtyard outside the campus cafe

Name: Eleanor 

Degree: Bachelor of Psychological Science 

How long have you been studying at UON?

This is my first year, first semester. So far I like it a lot more than high school. Students are more passionate, the teaching is better and I find the course work interesting. I decided to take a gap year after finishing high school because my last year of study was spent half in school and half online due to COVID. It was such a weird time, online learning can be so boring. It was challenging in high school as teachers all had their own way of teaching online. Some were really good and some just couldn’t do it and it was in those classes that you’d just lose all interest. So I really wanted a break from that and decided to spend a year working and earning money. I enjoyed it and I’m still glad I decided to take a gap year. 

What made you decide to study psychology?

I’ve always found people and their behaviours really interesting. When I was younger, I discovered a YouTube channel called ‘Psych to go’ that I always watched and found really interesting. I think this degree will be a cool way to connect to people, learn about the human mind and what drives us and others to do and think the way we do. I just find human behaviour really fascinating. 

Eleanor and other members of the mountaineering group.

Do you know where you want to take the degree?

I think I’d like to complete the degree and go on to do Honours. I think it’d be beneficial to do four years so I have the option to become a registered psychologist or go on to do research, but who knows. When I was younger I was first interested in something art related, then I liked the idea of engineering and acting. I guess you could say I have had a habit of jumping from one thing to another. I’m keen to keep my options open at this stage and see how it all goes. 

Have you joined any of the clubs on campus?

Most definitely. I actually joined the mountaineering club this year. Mountaineering is a very outdoorsy club and it focuses a lot on adventure sports so some of the activities include canyoning which involves scaling cliff faces and abseiling back down them. You can also do outdoor rock climbing, kayaking, hiking and plenty of camping trips.

Eleanor kayaking in Kangaroo Valley

The club is prolific at organising trips and they are often arranged depending on your skill level. When trips are announced, I look them over and select one that I’m interested in at my skill level. I was in the Blue Mountains a few days ago, initially for a hiking trip but the places we intended to visit were closed by council, so we ended up in the Megalong Valley and chilled out there for a few days. I was never much into camping but I’ve taken up camping a lot this year. My grandad even bought me a new tent as an early birthday present recently, it was just so lovely of him and I was so excited. 

Mountaineering group exploring Kangaroo Valley

Do you have any hobbies? 

In general I usually jump between hobbies, but I currently enjoy going to the gym. I love catching up with my friends especially during the uni break. We get together and have a yarn, go for a walk and catch up for a coffee. I go for little walks by the beach and in the bush, and in my down time I enjoy baking and catching up on my favourite tv shows. My go-to baked good is definitely brownies. I recommend the Donna Hays brownie recipe for anyone that enjoys baking from scratch. Using a mixture of brown sugar and caster sugar makes the brownie gooey on the inside crispy on the outside which is peak brownie. 

Do you have any advice for other students?

If you’re bored at uni and want to meet new people, join a club! Also, don’t be afraid to chat to other students in your class. Yes, initially it is a little scary, but people are cool and are always down to have a chat 😊 

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