Plastic Free July: Take the challenge

Last year, the CQUniversity Sustainability team launched the Ditch the Disposables campaign with a clear aim to reduce single-use plastics.

CQUniversity is not only working hard to educate staff and students on the harmful impacts of single-use plastic but also aims to lead by example. The University has embarked on a long-term sustainability journey and is working with particular areas to demonstrate its commitment to the environment.

Join the global movement of Plastic Free July!  Be a part of the solution to plastic pollution – so we can have cleaner streets, oceans, and beautiful communities.

Will you be part of Plastic Free July by choosing to refuse single-use plastics?

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Start TAFE Now to work towards a career!

Feeling a little overwhelmed with the prospect of post high school decision making? Not sure which career is right for you?

CQUniversity and Start TAFE Now (STN) can support you through the career planning process and help you get started on the pathway to your future!

Keep reading for our top career planning tips…

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Staying connected and coping well during this time of change

This first half of 2020 has been a time of uncertainty and change with the Australian bushfires earlier this year followed by the COVID-19 pandemic. People across our country and the world have been significantly impacted. Dealing with uncertain times and lots of change is not easy and can lead to feelings of stress, anxiety and helplessness. Many of us have experienced study, employment, financial, relationship, physical and mental health challenges this year that we didn’t expect we’d have to face.

As humans we long for security. We need to feel safe and have a sense of control over our lives and well-being. Fear and uncertainty can leave us stressed, anxious, and powerless over what direction to take and how to help ourselves and others.

We are mindful that there have been lots of changes at CQUni. Students have transitioned to online study which has changed how we connect as a community and an organisation. For a lot of you it’s been a time of isolation. Keep reading for some expert advice…

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From Global Pride to Local Support – Dr Gemma Mann

Dr Gemma Mann

This Saturday 27 June 2020 is Global Pride – giving the whole world a chance to join together to support lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex and people with other diverse genders and sexualities (LGBTI+). This also gives us a chance to reflect on the support offered at CQUniversity.

Dr Gemma Mann (pictured above) coordinates the CQUniversity Ally Program, and shares her journey, and how CQU is supporting the community.

Continue reading From Global Pride to Local Support – Dr Gemma Mann

Prepare for your studies with OTV

Starting university can be overwhelming at the best of times, not to mention in the middle of a global pandemic.

Although restrictions and social distancing requirements mean we can’t have our usual face-to-face Orientation events, we’re just as excited to deliver Orientation Our Way – a personalised online Orientation experience.

At the heart of the program is Orientation TV (OTV). In this blog, we’ve asked our events team to answer some of your burning questions about OTV and explain why it’s the best way to prepare for your first term.

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Balancing Part-Time and Distance Study with Life: Highlights and Challenges

Knowing what I wanted to study, I graduated high school and jumped straight into full-time study at another university. I was halfway through my first semester, sitting in my car with a uni parking fine in my hand, and I felt like I was having a meltdown. I made the realisation – ‘perhaps I’m not ready for this just yet.’.

I decided that the travel was too far and too expensive, the workload was such a leap from high-school that I doubted my ability to even complete my first assignment and my anxiety disorder hindered my ability to ask for help let alone make friends. So, I took a year off. Being only 18 years old at the time, I had a lot on my plate.

I had to save for a new car after a serious accident, I had to move out of home as my family was moving overseas and interstate and I had to do all this on a mere Subway wage. And yet, that year off was the best decision I had ever made.

Once I felt ready to get back into study still bubbling with my passion to become a teacher, I confided in my aunty who, at the time, was also an education student and a student ambassador for CQUni. She encouraged me to enrol at CQUni and what appealed to me most was the option to do my studies both part-time and distance. Having to maintain such an adult lifestyle at 18 years old and somehow fit study in, this option seemed perfect and quite frankly, the only option for me.

Part-time has given me the flexibility to work 30-40 hours a week and distance has allowed me the luxury of designing my own study timetable. For many, this may seem daunting having to monitor your own learning and motivate yourself to actually do the work but the online support is remarkable! I have had tutors consistently email and personally call to ensure I am managing the work okay and if they can assist in any way.

My study path now feels so much more personal and caters to my learning style and needs much more than if I were to attend a campus on a strict study schedule. I can proudly say that I am maintaining a 6.33 GPA (and rising), producing outstanding marks in all my units and been offered amazing opportunities, nominated for and won CQUni awards, invited into the Golden Key Honour Society and commended on my overall academic achievements from the dean on numerous occasions.

From this, I can confidently deduce that creating my own study path with CQUni through part-time and distance study was the best decision I could have made for myself. Rather than following the mainstream approach to tertiary study, I am now succeeding the same, if not better, than a full-time campus student – I highly recommend!

If CQUni’s flexible course options sound like they will fit your needs, contact us or send us a message on Facebook and our support team will help you take the next step.

Why do you study education at CQUniveristy?

As cliché as it may sound, becoming a teacher has been the dream since grade 3. Like most, you had your favourite teachers at school, and they were the ones who were teaching as more than a job. Personally, my favourite teachers inspired me with their ability to make me feel a sense of belonging in their classroom and encourage my ability to succeed in my OWN way. It was my very least favourites who motivated me to do better to ‘right their wrongs’ by understanding my students wants and needs before my own. I wanted to study education because of who I am as a person – empathetic, driven, organised, passionate and enthusiastic about learning as well as asking myself what is the impact I want to leave behind in this crazy world?

Orientation Our Way

In Term 2, CQUni is delivering a new personalised online Orientation experience, giving you more session options and the flexibility to learn about the topics that matter to you.

The interactive and personalised program will connect you with lecturers, support staff, alumni, and your fellow students – all from the comfort of home. Whether you’re a new or continuing student, there’s something for everyone with Orientation Our Way.

Continue reading Orientation Our Way

Australia under cyber attack

By Ritesh Chugh, CQUniversity’s information systems expert

Dr Ritesh Chugh

As I write this, Australia is under a cyber attack and the enormity of it can be assessed by Prime Minister Scott Morrison seeing the need to urgently call a press conference. While we know that Australia (and other nations) are subject to cyber-attacks regularly, it is concerning that this large-scale attack is “targeting Australian organisations across a range of sectors, including all levels of Government, industry, political organisations, education, health, essential service providers and operators of other critical infrastructure.”

The PM also said a sophisticated, state-based cyber actor is involved because of the scale and nature of the targeting and the tradecraft used. Hence, this could also be seen as an act of cyber warfare.

“… this could also be seen as an act of cyber warfare.”

The Australian Cyber Security Centre attributes the attack to ‘Copy-paste compromises’, in which a malicious actor exploits public-facing infrastructure to target networks and looks for vulnerabilities. Furthermore, the state-based cyber actor utilised spear phishing in which malicious emails are sent to specific targets.

For the general public, the advice is to be extra vigilant, check every email-transmitted file you open even if it appears to be coming from a trusted source and update to the latest version of protection software that blocks viruses, ransomware, spyware, key stroke loggers and so forth.

For organisations, the advice is to patch their Internet-facing infrastructure, update operating systems, secure hardware by changing passwords, back up all data, and use multi-factor authentication. It also is important that organisations (whether they have been attacked or not) communicate with their staff to apprise them of the situation and the defences they have in place to mitigate such cyber attacks.

“Such malicious cyber activity not only has an impact on our national security but portrays Australia in a weak light globally.”

Such malicious cyber activity not only has an impact on our national security but portrays Australia in a weak light globally. The impact of this cyber-attack on organisations and the general public will only become clearer in the upcoming days.

Finally, as such cyber-attacks are increasing in frequency, it is critical the Australian Government takes a robust approach towards its cyber defence. Cyber attacks should not become political weapons.