I am loud, I am passionate and I love working with people. I love talking to people, and I love meeting new people. I’m also mad about activism, advocacy, politics… you’ll probably find me arguing or debating with other people! However, I believe that you can’t really be a true advocate unless you meet new people and listen to them and their opinions, wherever they stand on the political spectrum, because you have to be open-minded to be able to listen to them.
At the end of high school, I really struggled with what I wanted to study. I thought about studying political sciences and social sciences, but I didn’t like essay writing. I also felt that my political views and beliefs come from personal experiences, and not from the ‘-isms’ of the world. Plus, I had always wanted to work in health care; that was something that I dreamed of since I was eight years old! Originally, I wanted to be a doctor, but my marks weren’t high enough – but I am so glad that I didn’t, because I found midwifery instead!
I initially chose midwifery for its connection to health care, but I realised on the first day, from the first time I walked into UTS, that midwifery was way more political and social than anything else I could have done. It deals with feminism, women’s rights, politics in the workplace and health care, and empowerment.
Midwifery is advocacy; it literally means “with women”. Our teachers taught us straightaway that to be a midwife is to be with women, and to me, that sounded like activism and advocacy, and sounded more fulfilling way than anything I could have imagined in any other career. It worked out well for me, because even though I originally did it just to satisfy one part of my interests, it ended up encompassing all of my passions. It’s basically become my personality too – I love it!
I chose UTS because it’s the #1 for Midwifery and Nursing in Australia! I also live in Western Sydney, and UTS is easily accessible through public transport as I didn’t want to use a car.
The most memorable aspects of my study have been while I am on placement. You are in a very important moment in someone else’s life journey – the birth of their child. It could be the first time they’re becoming parents, the first time a woman becomes a mother, and you’re there for it. Seconds after the birth, a woman has become a mother, and not only are you there to witness it, you’re also there to make it a better journey for them and help empower them to be ready for their new role as a mother.
The first birth that I saw was a normal birth and it was amazing. The woman was so powerful, and she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. It was an out-of-body experience for me, because I just felt so honoured to be involved. I even cried afterwards! I had no idea what midwifery was before studying it, I never considered how women gave birth before, but seeing it for the first was amazing.
Every birth thereafter has been just as awesome – even though you can experience some difficult ones, as a midwife, you are there with another human and you have the skills to make them feel better. I love being a midwife, I get goose bumps talking about it!
By studying to be a midwife, I think I’ve become very empathetic. I’ve met a lot of people who have different perspectives and I’ve become more open-minded. I’m also better at communicating now, and I’m better at reading people – my intuition has improved a lot. These are the skills that you learn from being around people who are at different phases in their life, and these are skills I can use when I’m around other people at university, work or at home. I think studying midwifery has made me a better person.
It’s my last year, so my immediate plan for the future is to make it through this year! I also have lots of conferences I want to attend, and I am even travelling overseas for the first time to the International Conference for Midwives in Bali – it’s going to be awesome. Then, I’ll graduate and begin working; my aim is to work in a continuity of care model. Once I’ve experienced working in this model of care, I want to try and use everything I know and learn to make sure that continuity of care is something that every woman has access to, not just in the big tertiary hospitals or the small birth-centres. I want to advocate for this model of care because every woman that gives birth should have someone that she knows with her. This is the golden standard so it should be given to all women.
I am also very interested in working overseas – seeing birth culture overseas in countries like Lebanon (where my dad is from) is very interesting to me, and I would love to see where that takes me. However, I want to start making change in Australia first – health care here is good but it can be improved, especially for women, babies and families.
My advice is be confident. Be confident in yourself and in your abilities, and just know that you are as good as anyone else in the room. My dad said to me, ‘World leaders, academics, professionals, we all have one thing in common: we are all human’. There’s no reason to be scared of another human, even if they are more qualified or more experienced than you; you can also get to that place if you believe in yourself! People also respond to your confidence; if you’re sure of yourself, people will recognise that and you’ll get more opportunities that way.
Find out more about the Bachelor of Midwifery at UTS.