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The world needs humanity. Our graduate students are having a positive impact on the education industry and the learning environment.


Discover how

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Katherine Pritchard, Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood)

As a teenager, Katherine Pritchard dreamed of being a teacher. But there were many and varied obstacles on her path: she was raised in an environment where “women were born to get married and have babies”, and where university was scorned as something “for greedy and materialistic people.” Plus, she felt that she didn’t fit in at school; the reason, she later discovered, was that she suffered the effects of ADHD.

Fortunately, as a young schoolchild she had a teacher who “modelled kindness, nurturing behaviour, respect and acceptance” – values that had a lasting impact and gave Katherine hope.

“I never let go of my dream. I wanted to have the same positive impact on children’s self-esteem that Mrs O’Dea had on me – to let children know they are worthy and valuable, that they deserve praise and can learn to embrace their individuality.”

Katherine chose to study Early Childhood education at Curtin, and graduated in 2017. She says that, despite a traumatic childhood, being raised in a low socio-economic environment, being neurodivergent, and having her aspirations thwarted due to her gender, she achieved her dream.

“The Chancellor shook my hand, congratulated me and handed me my degree. And I thought of Mrs O’Dea. Because of her, I am empowered to help others, keep learning and advocate for change.

“Now, through my own education, I can enact change in education.”

So much more about Katherine’s story will astonish and inspire you. Read her full essay, which includes how she discovered her Aboriginal heritage, here.