Already acquainted with what it’s like studying Paramedicine at WSU, but are still curious about how students really feel about this degree?
Well, we’ve had a chat with Christina, a Paramedicine student at WSU, about the pros and cons, and all the things students should know before enrolling into the degree.
Why should you study a Paramedicine degree at WSU?
Studying Paramedicine at WSU means you’ll have access to state-of-the-art equipment that you will be using as a paramedic on the job, such as heart monitors, oxygen masks and manikins! You get all of this while working in a fun and nurturing environment.
“Smaller cohorts make the degree feel more intimate (if that’s the right word) between students and tutors, as unwavering support. There are usually four students in each group for practical classes, so you all rotate roles as the treating officer, patient, note taker or paramedic partner per class.
“All academics are extremely experienced and still currently practising on the road, so they relate feedback and create scenarios based on jobs they’ve had in their past which really helps place our textbook knowledge into greater perspective and reality,” Christina says.
To take on this degree, you’ll need to be strong and resilient! There may be many hurdles throughout your Paramedicine journey, but you’ll be able to overcome them with the support this degree provides.
Top 3 Pros of a Paramedicine degree
#1: The academics want students to achieve their best
The teaching staff within the Paramedicine at WSU are industry-renowned professionals! But on top of this, they are also highly accessible and want their students to succeed.
“The tutors are always a Zoom call, email or door knock away!” Christina mentions.
“The Paramedic academics will always give you tailored feedback both positive and negative, so please don’t take criticisms to heart. It is only an additional viewpoint on how to improve — no one judges in pracs so appreciate and be grateful.”
#2: The ‘real life’ resources provided
As a Paramedicine student, you’ll have the chance to explore realistic scenarios and experiences. Christina says, “There are new state of the art facilities we get to use!”
The facilities include mock-up areas, such as a car accident. Students will get to interact with this happening and other accidents and emergencies as first responders, arriving at the scene and gathering vital information to treat the casualty.
#3: You can reach out to your classmates for support
There’s no doubt that this degree can be intense to study! In times when you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s important to prioritise yourself and your mental health — reach out to your friends in the cohort if you need support.
Christina shares, “While studying this degree, students including myself will go through times in their lives when things will not be so linear and perfect, which can easily steer your motivation away from the degree. It is important to reach out for help openly, not shamefully! Your friends will most likely be feeling exactly how you do!”
Top 3 Cons of a Paramedicine degree
#1: Truly committing to this degree means you’ll have to make some sacrifices
This degree is very much a hands-on degree. This means that travel and other things might not be on the cards for a while.
“Travel dreams are crushed as well as other sacrifices! There isn’t room for holidaying during the ‘STUVACs’. They fill break weeks with either placement or needing to study for assessment for the first week back so there is no room for extravagant holidays if you were planning to be a travel bug and study on the side,” Christina reveals.
#2: You’ll have a lot on your plate
This degree covers a huge amount of content! Students often see themselves staying back after class in order to study and complete work.
Paramedicine students may also have to dedicate their weekends to studying, but it’s also important to make time for yourself in order to have a healthy work-life balance.
Christina mentions, “You have to make room for studying on the weekends but do not let this unbalance the things you love to do outside of uni. You have to maintain a good balance, so you don’t burn out. Careful planning and schedules will help you with this.”
#3: You’ll be on campus quite a bit
Studying Paramedicine at WSU means you’ll have a heavy workload to tackle. Some weeks, you can find yourself on campus for 20+ hours.
Not only that, you’ll also have your practical placements to complete — so there really is a lot you’ll need to juggle with this degree. If you do feel like you’re falling behind, don’t hesitate to reach out.
“I regret not joining the student club sooner! I only joined in my final year but wish I had done it in the first year. It stands as a good way to develop leadership skills and work together with different people to a degree,” Christina shares.
Remember that uni isn’t only for studying — the social aspect is something you should get involved in right from the start if you’ve got the time! Being part of a club can help you expand your network and even help you find a job.
Check out the WSU ParaSoc page here!
What do you wish you had known before starting Paramedicine at WSU?
Due to the nature of this degree, it is important to go in knowing that there will be a big workload! This isn’t to scare you, but to prepare you for the planning and time you will need to take out for study.
What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities?
Paramedicine at WSU is a degree unlike many! In fact, it’s one of only three Paramedic degrees offered in NSW, so it’s already quite distinguished in that sense.
Though for Christina, she says, “I like the structure of the degree — not only practicals that teach you how to treat different conditions and scenarios but the clinical leadership side of paramedicine, the research, the ethical issues in health as a whole.“
She adds, “I don’t know too much about different degrees because this one was my first preference as it was 10 minutes away from home, but I like the university’s collaborations with medical companies, introducing interest for other students.”
What inspired you to choose Paramedicine at WSU?
There are many different reasons students will choose to study a Paramedicine at WSU but, at the core, everyone who studies this degree has a big heart and wants to help people!
Christina shares, “I was trialling different career choices in high school and nothing sparked interest until I did a first aid course with an ex-paramedic as the teacher of the day in TAFE when completing a childcare course.”
She elaborates, “Once I started to look into things, I enquired with St John Ambulance who were teaching first aid in my high school library. They were so open and welcoming for me to join and test the waters that I ended up falling in love with the idea of helping people every day as a job.”
What are the possible career paths?
Completing this degree will allow you to enter more than just the paramedic option! Other jobs that can emerge from this degree include:
- Paramedic Educator
- Further study into academia
- Policy writing within the health sector
Matilda Elliott is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and a Communication graduate with a major in Journalism at Western Sydney University. You can find some of her published work in a range of platforms including SBS World News, The Music Network and within her own creative exploits with her twin sister. Matilda is a lover of listening, helping people to tell their stories, making genuine connections, clowning around in her circus troupe and dancing like no one is watching at live music shows!