At Patrick’s College, we are very proud of our thousands of graduates. We hope you enjoy reading their inspiring stories below and we are currently working on acquiring more stories from graduates of 1923 to Present.
Kate Stephens, 2015 Graduate
“Following on from a work experience placement at Herbert Smith Freehills, I decided that a law firm was where I wanted to be when I left school. I did not want to be a lawyer but thought that my organized, structured, and optimistic personality would put me in good stead for a supporting role.”
“Not knowing quite where to start, I called every top tier law firm in the country and asked them where they would recruit from if they were looking for administration support. Patrick's College was mentioned several times (one lady that answered my call was an alumnus herself!) so I applied immediately and graduated in 2015.”
“The culture of the college was what I valued the most along with its pragmatic approach. There were no delusions of what the real world would be like when we entered the workforce – we were held accountable for our actions, shown the importance of being reliable and sticking to our word, expected to perform at a high standard and pushed to be proactive at all times.”
“Before graduating from Patrick's College I was fortunate enough to secure a place on Clayton Utz' Legal Secretary Graduate Program. Access to this program was only made possible due to Patrick's College and I will be forever grateful for my time at Clayton Utz. The firm provided me with many opportunities to further develop my career and the contacts that I met are not only professionally inspiring but also now dear friends.”
“After early completion of this graduate program I became a Legal Secretary Coordinator within the Corporate/M&A practice group. I supported six authors one of which was a leading M&A Partner who also sat on the Board for Clayton Utz. Additional to my primary supporting role, coordinator duties involved allocating fellow secretaries to vacant roles daily, assisting with performance reviews, managing leave requests as well as broader management of the secretaries within the Corporate group.
“This legal secretary role gave me direct access to clients, and I formed strong relationships with many of them. This relationship building is what then led me into the firm's Business Development team (a team that I did not even know existed before I joined Clayton Utz!) where I began implementing strategic marketing and business development initiatives across various practice groups.”
“Fast forward several years, I now work at a global firm, Ashurst, and support Ashurst Advance - the firm's integrated "NewLaw" division. We transform client service by working seamlessly alongside our legal experts to provide capabilities across advanced delivery, managed services, flexible resourcing, legal operations and digital. I am responsible for managing Ashurst Advance's APAC client network and ensuring the continuous development of legal service delivery to clients.”
“Patrick's College prepared me for and provided unique access to, many Legal Secretary Graduate Programs which have since opened doors for me. This opportunity has allowed me to perform in roles that I would never have dreamed of. I now work alongside professionals who are the best in market and offer unrivalled experience and expertise. As such, I would highly recommend Patrick's College. Regardless of industry, the College prepares and equips students with tangible and pragmatic skills that set them up for success in the workforce.”
Brock Galway, 2015 Graduate
“Coming out of school, I felt there was this big push on having everything sorted out and needing to find something to study or a clear pathway. I finished Year 12 as a Non-ATAR Student and decided to take this study option on for a few reasons.”
“I went to an open day for universities and colleges and met the Director at the time who was passionate about the college, its courses, and the success of the students. Outlining the clear and achievable study timeframes, the pathways open to students within a corporate job or further study was a standout for me and sparked my interest in studying Human Resources Management. Coming away from that day, I chose to explore this option and beyond thankful I did.”
“The education delivered from all the staff was not only professional but helped set me up with strong skills and knowledge for my career in the corporate world. I got to learn so much that was all new to me, whilst I felt motivated, empowered, and got to share each day with the friends I made at college.”
“I landed a position at Henry Davis York (now Norton Rose Fullbright) as a Legal Secretary.”
“Since graduating from Patrick’s back in 2015, I do not think I could have told anyone the right answer of where I would see myself 5 years from then. I grew quickly at Henry Davis York – starting as a Legal Secretary, transitioning into a Paralegal to then take a new focus working in Learning and Development, over to Business Development to then finally working as a People and Cultural Coordinator.”
“Over the past couple of years, I have really understood what I am passionate about and where I see my career going. With this, I did further studies in Music and Arts Management and from there I opened my own company working as an Artist Manager and Promoter for singers and bands in the Australian Music Industry. In my two years of having my own company, I have been able to see music released to the world and take on new audiences, see fan bases grow as well as go on tour for sold out shows and festivals.”
“Since creating my own company in the music industry, I have now singed a joint venture with an Australian Record Label where I am doing the marketing for their roster of artists.”
“During this whole time, it hasn’t all been about work. I’ve been able to travel to 18 countries with favorites including Japan, hiking through the Himalayas to Base Camp on Mt Everest, bungy jumping off every bridge in Queenstown, New Zealand and my favorite of them all, flying to Los Angeles for The Ellen Show, going on the show and meeting her.”
“The moment I graduated I was advocating for anyone to study at Patrick’s. One of my dear friends studied there 2 years after I graduated and is now an employee at EY.”
Capre Cleary, 2014 Graduate
“I chose to study at Patrick’s College as I had heard very positive reviews, and when I decided I was not going to sit my HSC, I decided Patrick’s would be more beneficial for me in the long run. Which I can now vouch was true!”
“I secured a job at Ashurst by the time I graduated, and I am now working at Allens as a Personal Assistant.”
“When I secured my role at Allens, they mentioned that having my Diploma of Business was a huge advantage in hiring me.”
“I have bought my own apartment and have started up a side business in the beauty industry.”
“I graduated in 2014 at the age of 16.”
“I learnt skills that I still carry to this day and made friends who I am still very close with and that’s what makes your time at Patrick’s memorable.”
Riley Mackenzie, 2009 Graduate
“After a year at the College, I took up a dream position with Hayman Island Resort in Queensland’s Whitsunday Islands. I considered myself lucky to have had this opportunity and have nothing but high praise for the College and my lecturer for preparing me for this.”
“Translating the classroom into the real world was daunting, but the College had fantastic teachers that went beyond.”
“The Diploma was a year to grow between high school and going out to work. Everyone had matured so much and my priorities had changed. It was great.”
Jennifer Gregg, 2009 Graduate
“I enrolled in a commerce degree at university straight out of school because it seemed the right thing to do. Due to the lack of structure and support at a large uni and because it was not really what I wanted to do after completing 1½ semesters I decided not to continue. I travelled for a while and worked as a veterinary nurse for about five years, but I knew I wanted more of a challenge and more opportunities.”
“Now a bit older and surer of what I wanted, I decided to pursue a career in marketing. I did some research. A friend had just completed a course in Business Administration with Patrick’s College and was now in a great job. She finally had her career on track and encouraged me to apply so I enrolled in the Diploma.”
“The learning environment was exactly what I needed – small classes, lots of support and encouragement from all teaching staff who always went above and beyond with their time. I obtained a great many new skills which I am now applying in my everyday work at The Cronos Group, where I am liaising with people all around the world every day.”
“My time at Patrick’s prepared me for my new work environment. I was able to arrive on my first day confident that I would be able to manage anything they threw at me! After my first performance appraisal my employers were just as thrilled with me as I was with them!.”
“I would recommend Patrick’s to anyone who needs a career change, a new qualification and who needs to feel like they are more than just a number in a great big system. Without the support of teaching staff I wouldn’t be where I am today. I felt such a sense of accomplishment at the end of it all, in fact I am pretty proud of myself – I have more focus and determination in regards to my career than I ever thought I could have!.”
Amelia Small, 2008 Graduate
“Finishing Year 12 was daunting with all the options available for further study. A PA position with a top-tier law firm had sparked my interest, but I did not want to study for the next three years. I had family friends, a mother and daughter, who had both studied the Business Administration Diploma at the College and had landed great jobs so I decided to enrol”.
“Midway through the one-year Diploma, I was selected for a Graduate Secretarial Position at Blake Dawson Lawyers.”
“The teachers were very professional and to the point. I knew that if I had any problems, I could go and sit down with the teachers. They have got all the time in the world for you. I enjoyed going to college every day and meeting lots of new friends.”
Danielle Roberts, 2008 Graduate
“I had always wanted to work in a law firm so I chose to study Business Administration at Patrick’s. My sister had previously gained the Diploma of Business Administration and a terrific job after studying at the College so she encouraged me to do the same after completing Year 10.”
“Within the first week I had met a lot of new friends and really liked all the teachers. You just need to stay dedicated, which is not hard when you are interested in what you are learning.”
“I landed a job in the Graduate Secretarial Program at Blake Dawson Lawyers, one of Sydney’s leading law firms. I am excited that Blake Dawson is such a prestigious firm and is a company which I can keep growing in professionally.”
“The course was well worth it, especially because I have achieved so much in just one year, I can now go out and start working.”
Whitney Bourne, 2007 Graduate
"I get to say ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’ to 700 people a day – and I love it! I am a Cabin Supervisor with Virgin Blue.”
“Without Patrick’s I’d never have this job. The Diploma was the best year of my life. The course was spot on with the real world job needs and has helped me know how to work with people.”
“The lecturers were were very down to earth, having all worked in the industry. During the course, I completed work placement atthe five-star Sheraton on the Park Hotel where I was offered a fulltime job the day I left the College. I got my foot in the door due to Patrick’s industry connections and after 1½ years with Sheraton and some travel, I applied for a job with Virgin Blue as ground crew. The Diploma definitely helped me get the job – they loved that I had a Diploma and was ready to progress my skills.”
“After 18 months on the ground I applied for her dream job as a Flight Attendant. I got the job and five months later I was promoted to Cabin Supervisor – a step that usually take much longer. I now look after three cabin crew and 180 passengers at a time”.
Brittany Pollard, 2005 Graduate
"Event management was always a dream of mine. I found out about Patrick’s as my sister attended the college in 2003. When Pat’s made a visit to my high school, telling us about the different courses available and what the college had to offer. It was then that I realised I wanted to make my dream a reality. I gathered all possible information about the college and attended their open day. After being briefed on the course, informed about the roads it could take us down and the careers we could have, I became excited at the possibilities opening before me. The open day gave me the chance to meet the trainers that I would soon be working with as well as some of the students. This came as a great comfort to me as only being 15 at the time, this new place seemed very exciting but also a bit daunting. But that soon changed."
"Within the first week everything about Pat’s was now exciting and that sense of fear had disappeared. I felt a sense of realisation and knew straight away it was by far the best choice I had made. From day one it was made obvious that to the lecturers this was more than a job, it was as if somewhere inside of them they too had a dream – to get us through the year, squeeze every ounce of potential we had out of us and produce the finest event managers the industry had ever seen. As the year progressed the lecturer’s became friends and the class formed a bond, working together to achieve the same mutual goal. The lecturers shared their stories of life within the industry, some making us laugh and others, making us realise how much we wanted to experience the industry for ourselves. It was the lecturer’s motivation that made us work to the best of our ability and consistent encouragement and support was given without fail."
"Never once did turning up for college feel like an effort. The work was interesting, class time was never draining and, unlike school, the lecturers treated us as adults, not like children. It was soon time for work experience, four weeks being a substantial amount of time to be placed in the industry. This was our chance to show off all of our new skills and to leave a lasting impression. I was very fortunate to gain in internship at an event company in North Sydney called CI Events. During the four weeks I was lucky enough to work on some of the company’s major events. This not only included the preparation for the event but also seeing the event take place. One of my most memorable experiences was working on the Woolworths event, which happened to be the largest sit down dinner ever held in Australia. I walked away with a much greater understanding of the industry and appreciated how much time and effort the trainers put in for us. Thinking I was only coming away with a greater understanding of what I had been studying, it was much to my surprise when one of my lecturers had told me I had secured a full time position with the organisation."
"Finishing the year off with a team of students that were not only potential work colleagues but life friends, a Diploma and a full-time position at a major events company, I knew my dream really had come true. I couldn’t have asked for more from the College."
"Without the guidance, trust and support that was given to us, the ability to achieve what I thought was nearly impossible, happened. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the College."
Nicole Day, 2001 Graduate
“I think everyone has a vision and the basics to make things happen, and that with the right support – like Patrick’s provided me – you get the confidence in yourself and your abilities.”
“Patrick’s offered a great transition from school to work, was located in Sydney near transport and offered a great social life meeting new people. When I completed the course I won a place with Warner Brothers Australia for the role of Executive Secretary. This role was extremely busy from facilitating international and national events, to one-on-one assistant responsibilities.”
“Following this I got a role with Krispy Kreme Australia as Fundraising Executive. This job gave me the opportunity to visit the fundraising department in Seattle, USA, and derive ideas that could be implemented in Australia. This was invaluable and I implemented the Fundraising Ambassador program in each store, managing all aspects including staff training. I was subsequently offered an internal promotion at Krispy Kreme to Executive Assistant to the Director of Human Resources/HR coordinator and completed an HR course.”
“Then in 2005 I took a role at Foxtel as Executive Assistant to the Director of Legal and Business Affairs which I loved, but it was a long commute and after maternity leave in 2008 I found a role as Office Manager with the Smith Family – commercial enterprise, where I am now. I love the variety this role allows and work autonomously on projects.”
“It is great to be working for an organisation that gives back to the community through the education of Australian children. I enjoyed everything about Patrick’s College but especially the fact that they challenged me to exceed my own potential and offered me the support and encouragement needed. I went in with a vision of what I wanted to be and achieve.”
Sarah Potts, 1999 Graduate
….from Executive Assistant to General Manager…
“I was aware of Patrick’s due to my grandmother, Norma Sheehan (nee Molloy), attending in the 1930’s (she also played a major role in organising the 50th Anniversary of the College!) and it was always spoken so highly of. For me, I felt Patrick’s provided a course that I was passionate about and gave me a sense of direction after high school to forge my future utilising the skillset I had and the career path I was enthused by. I attended in 1999 and completed the 12-month Course in Business Administration / Secretarial.”
“It was a college that encouraged diversity, different ways of thinking and every teacher was so encouraging of each student’s education. I also enjoyed the very special bond formed between my fellow students who are still close friends after 20 years.”
“Nearing the completion of my course I was interviewed, via the college employment program, and commenced employment with Boyd House & Partners, a boutique legal firm in the city where I remained for 15 months and then moved to Gilbert & Tobin legal firm.”
“I remained in Sydney for 2.5 years after College and then travelled and worked overseas for 4.5 years. For 3 of those I was working for one of the world’s biggest law firms, Clifford Chance which was a phenomenal EA experience in London.”
“I have since had an incredible career, based in Sydney, for the past 13 years at Southern Cross Austereo, parent company of the national Hit (2DayFM), TripleM and LiSTNR audio networks. With 65 offices and 1700 employees nationally it is a joy to work in media and in such an innovative and forward-thinking company. My first role at SCA was EA to Legal and my current role is General Manager, Sydney.”
“It has been a wonderful career journey thus far that has instilled in me that anything is possible. I hope this encourages current and future students of Patrick’s to follow their career dreams…. And trust me, the skills you learn at Patrick’s will forever be with you in the most positive of ways!”
“I believe Patrick’s College is a wonderful experience and provides students with so many opportunities. Without Patrick’s as the foundation of my career I wouldn’t be where I am today.”