26k in HECS debt, regretting my choice and want to go to tafe instead

I'm graduating with my Bachelor's of Environmental Science this month. I regret it. I'm so burnt out, finding a job feels impossible. Having to jump through so many hoops for the application process, having to do free labour for experience, and a lot of jobs seem like so uptight. I dont think I even want to do it anymore. I dont feel like im capable for it either.

I want to go to tafe but I'm finding it hard to find something that isn't a hard trade where females aren't liked or something that pays shit. I was thinking dental assistant but I heard it's shit pay and work. I feel so lost. I just want some recommendations, and I want to start paying off my HECS as soon as I can.


26k in HECS debt isn’t really that much to be honest. I had that. I didn’t even finish my degree. Got into the work force a few years later started earning good money and it was paid off in a few years.


Yeah, agreed! And it’s the cheapest debt you will ever take on in your life - tracks CPI and is taken out in small amounts. I’ve been paying mine off for 10 years and still have more than $26k remaining


In whose world exactly is 25-50k considered a "cheap debt"?


I referred to it as cheap because it’s a loan you don’t pay interest on, and the money is used as an investment that will likely result in higher paying salaries/income


It’s literally been the cheapest loan you could get for the last decade or two lmao The 1 year where indexation is high and now you get people like this who have no clue, unbelievable


It’s also the most flexible debt and the flexibility has a massive discount. Imagine if your home loan repayments matched your ability to earn?


Yep, some people really struggle to understand 🥴


Because these types of posts always pop up… perhaps you should look at NZs student loans for cheap repayment schedules. Interest free for residents, 2.9% when you are overseas and annual repayments are half what you need in Oz. As you wrote, some people have no clue I guess.


The loan gets indexed to CPI, which at 7% this year, can surely outcompete with any market interest rate out there. The claim about it leading to a higher pay/salary/income only applies if you do a degree that actually pays a decent salary. Many actually just pay an average salary. That statistic, I presume, is distorted wildly by professions such as law and medicine.


Debt being cheap or expensive doesn't refer to the level of debt, it only refers to the cost to hold that debt. I.e, a $15k car loan at 20%pa is extremely expensive debt. A commercial loan of $10m at 0.5%pa is cheap.


Nominally, a $50k is expensive. In fact, it's anathema in most normal and decent countries to subject a child to such a high amount of debt. Yes, a low interest rate can make any debt more manageable, but with the average debt being indexed by 7.1% this year, it's expensive, and most people will see their overall debts increase regardless of their compulsory payments. Yes, people call this year an anomaly and predict inflation will fall by next year, but given the predictions we've seen from certain institutions regarding wage growth, and recently, interest rates, the forecasts are amusing. Whatever the case, the cost of living crisis goes unaddressed, university degrees continue to reach and sometimes supersede American levels, and the average HECS debt has actually increased in the last 10 years, so I really question this belief that it's cheap.


the cost of having the debt, not the value of the debt itself. Inflation indexed debt backed by the govt will always be the cheapest way to borrow. No bank or private lender would lend on these terms, they'd lose money. The lowest personal loan rate I can see from a quick google is 6.5% but it compounds monthly, must be secured and repayments start straight away. No student could afford that. The price of the education is a different issue, but HECs/Help is the cheapest way for someone to finance tertiary study.


If HECS debts weren't indexed, it would just benefit people who graduated years ago.


In life terms it is. No more than a car. Plenty of debts bigger than that in life.


The important thing I found as well paying it off was that as my income increased the amount you pay to HECS increases but as my income was still increasing compared to what I had been earning I didn’t notice this being paid off.


Same. I had 28 and ended up in a job that has NOTHING to do with my degree


Same here. No degree but now I've got about half of it to go


The things you have suggested are all over the shop, slow down and have a think about what sort of work you are actually suited too and can tolerate.


Also just putting this here -- based on OP's post history step one should probably be visiting a psychologist/psychiatrist for help.


I think this is a really good first step OP. If you aren't already, this will really help with your mindset and outlook.


As someone who dropped out of uni the first time due to mental health issues and accumulated a bunch of pointless debt, I thoroughly recommend sorting out mental health before committing to any further study or making big career decisions.


I also did this. And second this advice. 12 years later I have 6k still to go!


Yeah I graduated from university the second time. That was 8 years ago, and as at end of last financial year I still had 30k to go. Luckily the last couple of years I’ve gotten some decent promotions at work so I’m going to be able to pay it off in full soon.


To be honest, why do people always look at someone's post history? Is it to gather context and reply accordingly? Going back to topic, I had a quick browse after reading your comment and wholeheartedly agree


Sometimes it's just to see if writing a response is worth the thought. Like if someone's posting about an issue for help or whatever....but they've made 8months of the same post/problem and seemed to ignore every response there's no point.


It’s really weird but some people use reddit as a creative writing outlet, especially ‘help/advice’ subs. People can overdramatise situations or straight up lie, and I find if I want to give a serious/long response, particularly one based on something personal, I like to make sure it’s actually a ‘real’ person.


I don't normally look at people's post history but in this case I wanted to see if I could find out what state OP was in to give them state-specific advice. Instead I was just like... ah.


That's assuming she can afford one....?


If you visit a GP and get put on a mental health assessment plan you can claim up to 10 mental health sessions per year through Services Australia. https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/mental-health-care-and-medicare?context=60092


OP may still be able to access counselling through uni for free. Access may cut out once they graduate but worth an enquiry. They can also assist with adjusting to transitioning out of study and into the job market.


Yeah they're counselors so they can't give medication or anything but life choices around careers and that sort of thing they're great for. I went to one and decided to stop uni, but that was 100% the right choice for me and they helped me see that.


Some are psychologists rather than counsellors depending on the university. Psychologists also can't dispense medication but can administer CBT and other therapies.


Yeah from what I experienced it wasn't even so much their skills but the time slots. I think I had only 15 or 20 minutes. It was great for a frank conversation to get resources or something, a bit like a GP for your brain. But not sure how much trauma processing or what have you, you can do in 20 minutes.


The gaps still over a hundred without some kind of NDIS help


And while other commenters have pointed out that these sessions may not be free, sessions through Headspace will be if OP is a young person.


10 free sessions on Medicare is a good start.


They’re not free unless you can find a psych who is willing to accept the Medicare fee unfortunately.


I went to one and she was terrible. Made me question why she wasn't charging more to be honest.


It isn't free unfortunately as it only covers a certain amount.


Used to be 5. Nothing can really be achieved with 5 sessions. 10 is better definitely.


Using someone.health or another online telehealth service is free but most you get a rebate of $89


Bear in mind, this will hinder a lot of your job applications. A lot of jobs like Firies, Cops, and even ATC will ask for your Medicare claim record and they will find that you have visited a psychologist/ psychiatrist and it WILL impact your application. As much as a lot of people said it doesn't, it really does. It is not a direct rejection but you do have to explain a lot of shit to them, getting those doctors to certify that you're mentally perfect now etc, and you still have a higher than average chance of failing the application


> A lot of jobs like Firies, Cops, and even ATC will ask for your Medicare claim record This should be illegal (and I'm surprised it isn't)


Agreed I would much prefer a cop who has a diagnosed and well managed mental health issue instead of a undiagnosed and un treated one.


Mental health is more important. But I guess chat gpt and joirnaling.


It doesn't hinder them, it makes them take longer though. I have a job where I need to be mentally stable. Do psychometric testing, talk to a psychologist... I told them my history they demanded my medical records. I thought for a good moment about that before taking the job let me tell you, but I did it, signed on the dotted line to see my doctor's notes about me, and I got the job. It showed I was actually addressing and aware of my flaw.


Start broad, like if there was an interest in environmental science, does op think working outdoors would be preferable, in a lab? In an office? On the road? Then narrow it down.


I feel like you should just take a break for a month or so after you've graduated if that's financially feasible for you. I mean life doesn't get any easier. I got made redundant end of Feb and I'm back at uni studying a cert to try to get in to something new. This won't be the last time you feel like this, OP. Just try and take a few weeks off.


I kind of want to take a whole year off actually. I'm going overseas for a few months next year anyways. I'm just worried is 1 or 2 years go by and employers see it as a red flag.




I was a dumb 22yo straight from uni pre frontal cortex development grad. Now that I'm a little more mature I 100% agree with you.


I've done this twice with zero impact on my job prospects. The first was straight after my under grad. I studied business and a bit like you, absolutely hated it by the end but finished it just so I had a degree. Went to live in Scotland and did temp work for a year. Found my passion while I was over there. Came back to Australia and pursued that. The second was about 10 years later when my wife started her PhD at an overseas uni. We went with the intention of me getting a work visa but it was much harder than expect and I was never able to find a job that would sponsor me. I went home after a year as it made more financial sense and was able to find a job again in my field after a month or two. If any employer noticed the gaps in my cv, it obviously didn't bother them as it never came up at any point during the recruitment process. So I'd say if you want to take a year off and can afford it, absolutely do it. You've got 40+ years of work ahead of you and if you have kids, buy a house etc , taking extended time off to go overseas just isn't possible.


Go overseas. Relax, take a break, maybe do something here like a vintage at a winery, something different. It’s the best thing you can do for yourself and most employers value it or at least don’t see it as a negaative


Red flag? Absolutely not. This is prime gap-year territory. No one is going to bat an eyelid at your CV stating you took a year or two off to explore the world and get experience. Travel builds maturity and independence. I'd much rather hire a grad that has travelled the world than one that stayed home and potentially never left their family home. If you're seriously questioning what you want to do with your life, you're doing no one - especially yourself any favours by languishing. Take the time to get to know yourself and when you get back you will hopefully have a better sense of direction. If you work out you desperately want to take on more study then you can do so when you get back. Travel in your youth is not a red flag. Someone with very little professional experience who has gone from degree to degree to degree, struggling to make a career commitment? Red flag.


I got my honours in computing and spent nearly a full year at my hospitality job after graduating before thinking about applying for a job in the field - dont feel like you need to rush into "using" your degree just coz its there.


Don't worry about the gap in your resume as it can just be explained as "oh, I decided to have a gap year after my graduation - I saw the world and have so much life experience", etc etc.


People have babies all the time, care for their parents... Gaps are fine if you can explain them.


GAP years are fine. You may as well do it now while you're young. In the future, again, you may likely have children or other obligations that will restrict you from travelling. *(I'm also on the verge of living overseas quite soon, dependent on when my wife receives her job offer.)*


It's not uncommon for graduates just to skip the country with overseas and not pay their debt.


If it's a red flag to them, it should be a red flag to you that that employer isn't compatible with YOU. I wish we'd all stop worrying about this kind of thing but it is understandable when there's so little certainty offered to us coming out of uni esp. in our field.


just to put your mind at ease a bit, a degree is never wasted. It shows employers that you can stick to something for years, that you have the ability to produce high quality work and that you're educated. Like you I started with a basic kinda science degree and struggled to find work directly related to my degree. The game changer for me was understanding that lots of jobs just want general skills, not specific qualifications. Some jobs I got even listed requiring specific degrees, but really all they wanted was a competent person. Understanding this opened up the job market from 3-4 relevant jobs a month, to hundreds. Through Enviro Science you learn document creation, statistics, people skills, working in groups, working individually and the concepts of sustainability, all of these are highly employable. Good cover letters and a great looking CV are the keys to getting jobs, not specific degrees. I'd even recommend paying money to get your CV professionally done if you're not a document creation master yourself. You're fine!


I second this. My advice is to start looking for graduate jobs without specific degrees. Lots of government jobs are graduate jobs but are general in nature. Once you have this job, then start thinking about TAFE. Or you might find that there are areas that interest you that you can get into from your degree that you wouldn't have known.


Degrees can certainly be wasted. Nonsense. Got an office manager with a masters and I can assure you, she is paid and treated like any other office manager


You can't say if her degree was wasted on her behalf. What if she developed new skills / made good networking connections through doing her masters? Like yeah, fine, you wouldn't personally choose to do a masters, but it doesn't mean they have zero worth. Some employers (maybe not your current employer, but who knows where she will go next) place value in them.


Nothing is "wasted" with learning stuff. Expensive? Sure thing, but you have gained knowledge you wouldn't have otherwise. A lot of skills you develop from studying are also very transferable. Being good at studying however, doesn't equal good at a job. Your manager might just not be very good at "doing".


You can't look at degrees like that. Do you think Einstein got his science degree because he wanted a research gig with a leading firm? Or do you think he just wanted to learn science? The aim of a university is to increase a person's, and by extension, humanities, understanding of a subject. It's not TAFE, which aims to teach an employable skill. I wish they told highschoolers this. Might help them choose better. Uni is about passion and literally always was. Used to be funded by the rich to educate themselves after all.




Yeah I mean we're doing better than it being only available to the aristocrats of the 1700s, but we're still not quite open to all.


I'm sure a lot of Arts degrees are wasted.


I dont know about that. They seem to be great at writing essays. Much higher standard if writing and english than business grads


Are you though? Are you really?


Medieval French poetry and medieval woman’s history didn’t help a family member of mine much!


I mean.... look... I'd believe that hahaha.


What do they do now?


They went back… did another degree… spent 20yrs working in govt in that profession (it was a professional degree with a defined job at the end of it), and now work at a national manager level in a major charity/NGO that you would know the name of in a blink. A degree opens doors. It’s not necessarily the doors you think. It gives you skills to do all sorts of things, and teaches you have to research, analyse and respond.


Hey mate, my sister finished her environmental science degree about 2 years ago and landed a pretty sweet job with JK Environments as an environmental engineer (soil testing and shit). If you're Sydney based, I'll be more than happy to have a chat to her and see if any entry level positions are available?


Get a random full time job for a while until you figure shit out. It will definitely give you some perspective and you'll be able to earn some money and learn some soft skills.


This is exactly what I'm going to do, I feel like it's the best choice for me right now




Depends on the job. Some random bar job, yep. But a semi-random admin or low skill job for council or anything in govt, or working in a nursery or bush regen isn't flaky and unsure. I finished uni in December (mature age, plant and soil science) and I'm just chilling because like OP I'm a bit overwhelmed and "ugh" about job hunting. I've got a low skill job for nsw health, part time. In my free time I'm doing hobbies and projects like building a pond out of scrap wood with a lil hydroponics setup, fish keeping, bird watching and bush walks and camping, trying to propagate native plants from seeds and cuttings, homebrew, volunteer etc. Gonna use my free time and easy money to get my chemcert and forklift license (and... wait for all the pot I used to smoke to leave my system lol).


So do you think that literally not working at all looks worse than having an unrelated job? What about during uni, do you think it is better to list the random jobs you have had or not? And how do people just take a break without working, most people can't afford to do that or are you talking about people who can stay with their parents? (I know these questions might look like I'm arguing but I'm genuinely asking your opinion, as someone who is studying and working in an unrelated field and may take a while to get a proper job after my degree).




What if the person needed to support themselves? I did this (construction), my partner did this (retail) one of my friends is doing this right now (installing aircons), straight after graduating because we were poor as hell and needed to pay our rent and eat. Please consider this may be the case if you are screening person in this position in future


I did the same but ended up dropping out of my course to continue working full time. I couldn't sustain studying and working at the same time


No one feels capable straight out of their degree


Hello fellow grad!!! Congrats on getting through! I am also finishing my degree in enviro science in June. It’s been a long slog with working full time, studying part time and becoming a dad to 2 kids in between. I am looking forward to finishing up and understand what you mean about feeling burnt out. For that reason, rather than doing uni right now, I am sitting down and planning a camping trip with my mate for the day after the final assessment is due, to go bush for a week. No technology / no service, just complete disconnect. Don’t get disheartened. Start applying for jobs now, particularly while there is low unemployment and staff are needed. I am trying to submit some government job applications but I just don’t have the time with uni / work / family. Focus on the reason you did the degree in the first place. My reason is I hate working exclusively in an office and want something that feels rewarding and gets me outdoors a bit. As long as I don’t get a pay drop, I’ll be stoked to get entry level jobs. I feel I have grounds to negotiate salary as well. The worst they say is no. I know my work ethic, standards and dedication. I know that I am capable of climbing the ladder with ambitions of a career. There is good money to be had if you are willing to specialise and job hop. It’s never gonna be crazy AusFinance level money but for me the trade off is following my passion.


Heya, if you haven't already, get to a career consultation, most (if not all) universities offer them for free (well, they're paid for by your SSAF) for graduates for up to a year. They'll be able to help you nail down what your options are, why you're running into the blocks you currently are, and potentially discover things you hadn't previously considered. Believe me when I say I completely understand the burnout, and that approaching the world of work is intimidating, but I've worked with some people in the environmental sciences side of things, more in policy/consulting, and they've been great to work with when I've had the chance, so not everywhere is horribly uptight - and this is the sort of thing you can iron out with a professional :) If you haven't already as well, check to see if you've got access to any industry mentoring services through uni too!


You’re getting some good advice in this thread OP. My suggestion would be to take your time off as others have said. It’s not a big deal, and your HECS debt is pretty minor in the scheme of things. If you’re that burnt out, best to rest before you get into work, then hit the ground running. Don’t be afraid to tell potential employers that you took a break to explore and have fun for a while before you settle into work - were all human too and others have said, best to get that out of the way before knuckling down. Stick with enviro science IMO. It’s such a critical area these days and there should be plenty of opportunity out there. Some workplaces will feel wrong for you, and that’s a learning experience. My suggestion is be honest in your interviews about what you’re looking for, and listen to the feedback. Good hiring managers will tell you if you’re not a good fit for the company and why. This is very valuable and you should always seek this feedback if it’s not offered. Don’t be afraid to be persistent.


I used to think my degree was useless, and then one day it let me get an overseas visa really easily, since it was accepted as proof that I was a “highly skilled” person (despite the fact that I didn’t feel highly skilled at all). Just something to keep in mind if you’ve ever thought of living overseas.


Girl. Take a breath. Find yourself a good recruiter and get them to place you in something suitable. Recruiters do all the legwork for you. Grad programs aren’t everything. Do a couple of short term contracts until you find a good culture fit and work you enjoy. Save for a good holiday and let yourself properly unwind. Life happens one day at a time. You don’t have to have it all figured out right now. It’s okay to just work for a while. You have a degree. In actual science. That’s a massive achievement and you should be really really really proud. More training isn’t the answer until you need qualifications for something you really want to do. Go spend some time figuring out what that is and have some fun! You’ve earned it.


$26k is literally nothing in the grand scheme of things. Don't worry about the money. You have a degree which can be an entry point into a lot of careers - just because you have a Bachelors of Environmental Science doesn't mean you HAVE to be an Environmental Scientist. Go get a random office job in your state government's environment department, or something tangentially related to your degree like a generic data analyst job. The transition from science to data isn't difficult. Just remember to tailor your CV and selection criteria (if applicable) to the job, and at your stage of your career writing a cover letter is a good choice too.


People get too uptight over he's. It'll be like 50 bucks a week out of your pay cheque every week dont sweat it.


Yeah don't just pick something because you feel lost. You feel this way because you're running a race no one asked you to, to get to a finish line that doesn't exist. Take some time to breathe if you can, go away by yourself, meditate and figure out whats important to you and what you want your future to look like. Once you have a rough idea on that, look at what will serve that. Good luck!


Where are you looking for work? I'm in my final year of the Bachelor of Enviro Science and have had a job in the industry for a year (part time while finishing my degree, but they really want me full time). Consultancies are screaming for grads.


$3000 for a 1 month CELTA course. Teach English to international students at a language school ($50-$60 an hour - 4 hours a day casual) or at a university ELICOS programme ($80-$90 an hour - 4 hours a day casual).


Wow good on you for following through on your degree and graduating! It’s so hard especially if you’re not loving your course and feeling burnt out. $26,000 isn’t anything to stress over and you will pay it off over time. I personally wouldn’t go back and study just yet, but would get some form of job off the back of my degree and just get started and see how it goes


Hey boss, just take a step back and look at what you have achieved. It took me 18 months to get a job in my field after graduation. Your HECS / HELP does not have to be paid overnight. Take it form someone who graduated 15 years ago. I graduated as a teacher and my job now has nothing to do with education whatsoever. I also dealt with imposter syndrome until I found something that I just enjoyed doing. People that think they are not good enough for the job are usually the best ones for it because they are always looking to improve (IMHO). You don't need to get a job in your chosen field straight away. Can I suggest looking for an entry level (or maybe even a senior level considering your degree) govt job ? There may be some tangentially related to your area of expertise that you could parlay into experience.


I'd start by seeing a career advisor if I was you, pinpoint roles that interest you before wasting any more money on study, I'm going through the same process trying to change careers.


Tafe is not a bad gig if you find your call. You would be surprised how many graduated people enroll into tafe courses after they finish their degrees (I know that as I am a TAFE teacher). Everybody knows that TAFE gets you into work faster than uni (in most cases) so you could use a tafe course to get into a job you like doing and then use your degree to accelerate your career in that field.


Maybe look at project admin roles in demolition companies. I dont think they would advertise for an environmental scientist but it wouldnt hurt you having that background. They have to work with environmental consultants on the daily.


Perhaps try out a few different positions and areas within the field before doing a complete backflip and abandoning years of your time and effort.


Google year 13. Designed for those leaving school to figure out what they wanna do. I've sent people in their 30s and 40s to it though. When you have the headspace.


sounds like you just need a gap year.


First off, congratulations on finishing your degree dispite the burnout. I've had two friends drop out right at the end when they had 6 months left. Leaving uni with all the debt and no degree. I had a similar experience after graduating (Business bachelor) and getting a job without prior experience seemed impossible. I continued packing shelves for 12 months before getting an entry level public service job. It will happen for you. The best advice I can offer you is find something entry level and build experience, even if it's not quite what you want to do. Where you start is not where you finish. Additionally, I don't think more study would help while you're already burnt out. Find something to do, either "unskilled" work or casual hobby wise, and give yourself some time to find your feet. Life isn't a race. Take your time and best of luck. :)


Do you live at home? If so, take it easy and find any type of work. Do not be the person that continues to study unless you live a comfortable life - i.e. have family that own their own home and you are welcome to stay for peanuts (LOL yeah, I heard some people "contribute") and don't intend to move out. This way you can focus on work and paying down your debt. Also, if you study again, you will be burned out sooner rather than later. Hope you aren't a battler and have some choices in your life to be a softie.


Only 26k? Must be nice 😭😭😭


Check out 'train driver' High responsibility but also very systematised. Great money optional over the years, good money very steady. No hurry on HECS


Not sure where you live but consider moving regional and working for local council. They offer either entry level traineeships or environmental health officers. There are also private consulting firms out there too. It’s really good experience and should expose you to lots of different things to help segway later into a city role


I do think u need to go to doc for a regerral to see a psychologist for a chat or a vocational guidance person at uni. Someone said u should consider the army in one of your other posts. With your environmental studies you might be a good fit as they are called to help in certain areas locally.


Go get a random job to earn some money, then go travel and clear your head out. It will change your perspective on things. Life isn’t linear


Sometimes you need to think outside the box, just because your degree is in environmental science doesn't mean that's path you must rigorously pursue. If you enjoy meeting new people and having a yarn then what about something like [this](https://www.seek.com.au/job/66714034?type=promoted#sol=91a6cab8e793e80a74bb217990576aaa65bea054) ? it says no experience necessary and it'll help you start chipping away at that student loan, sounds like you'll get a company car, phone and laptop which are usually massive expenses for any grad. Have a think about it.


Your post history is a joke. You comment on being upset that you’re a lesbian. Then post about how same sex couples shouldn’t have children. Then post about killing yourself because you like a guy and it made your only friend hate you. This is bullshit


Daddy chill


Burnt out from what?


Studying full time and borderline working full time as well.


This kids is a reason for free or very low cost higher education like in Europe. You don’t have the ‘choice paradigm’, let alone the other issues with the neoliberalism of student loans.


Environmental - see if you can get a job in mining ⛏️ Good salaries. Lots of work.


My cousin has a degree in Environmental Science has been working for a mining company in WA for the last 2 years. He loves it, good money and enjoys the lifestyle.


I have the made the assumption of sustainability. Aren’t we in an age of greenwashing? I imagine you have some great skills in data analysis etc, businesses want recommendations to help their image. Along with the image piece hopefully some actionable agendas.


That's amazing and you have no idea what turns your life will take in the future. You will probably be able to leverage that degree in ways you have never anticipated.


Hey, Sorry to hear you're feeling burned out. I went from environmental science to land surveying and never looked back. You could possible even get a grad diploma on top of your existing degree. I currently study at USQ and there's quite a few female teachers and students, mostly male but it's not too uncommon. Hope it works out for you.


Do another year and become a teacher ? If you gonna so tafe/further learning anyway? Or if tafe maybe something horticultural ?


Not the end of the world mate, I was in a similar situation after graduating and spent 8 years in low paying jobs that didn't even chip away at HECS. Doing okay now and out of the debt cycle. It is tough but there's always a path forward.


Chill out bro. Get yr degree and get a job. Cash cash cash


Could always look at something like a seasonal firefighting position in your local national parks/forestry.. Doing a season or 2 there is paid and gets you a way in and to understand the organisation. You can then branch out into internal advertised positions in conservation, fire management and ranger positions. Your degree would be looked at favourably and the ways to branch out are immense.


Chat to your universities career department - they'll have plenty of new grad resources, connections to paid internships, much more insight into the job market and they will help you with your CV.


>Bachelor's of Environmental Science Have you tried migrating to Perth? Companies here are desperate for Environmental Science people due to ESG compliance.


I think stick with it. Surely a growing area. Don't let your temporarily burnt out brain make permanent decisions.


Something that pays shit might be good for a while if it takes you out of your comfort zone, helps you make friends and isn't so far removed from your degree qualifications that there's no potential career synergy from the experience. Even if all you do is pay part of the indexation on your HECS some years you'll be getting ahead. There's lots of other options too. I mean people make money from all sorts of stuff nowadays. There's people making money on YouTube from, I shit you not, picking up rocks and then slicing them and polishing them. If it comes down to it imagine a world in which you get to do whatever you want then try to work out how to monetize doing whatever you want. At least then you'd have the pleasure of the work. Basically you're in a pretty good situation... you're just feeling a bunch of anxiety.


Where are you based?


Have a break. You’re in week ?? 10 of a huge marathon. It is no wonder you feel exhausted and overwhelmed about the concept of work and new things. Give yourself a few weeks of boredom after uni and think about next steps with less cortisol running through your system.


Get into white collar and work ur way up the corporate ladder


Take a year off, go travel, figure out what you actually want to do


Dont be a dental assistant, you just end up bending over for a dentist. My niece just started her mechanical apprenticeship through tafe. Good money ont he mines, hundreds of thousands a year after you finish. The days of female hate on teh work place are over honestly, too much risk involved. ​ Free tafe courses atm are for cyber security. The government in bringing in new laws that require more businesses to hire cyber security experts. Your hex debt will get nullified at 40 if you haven't paid it off. Also, I believe it is tax deduictable dude, so basically in 2 years you will have paid that shit off.


Do not do dental assisting. Alot of dentists have a god complex and treat their assistants like dirt.


$26k in HECS debt is nothing. I’ve racked up $69k.


Yeah should have done an electrical apprenticeship


I'm still paying off my multiple degrees 10 years in. OP, you'll be fine. Take some time to yourself and focus on what you want to do with your degree. After all, you started it with something in mind. Get whatever work you can that's related to your degree, it helps to build up your CV for future jobs. Be prepared to move across country if that's what it takes. Be prepared for the possibility that your degree was in fact a waste of time; you won't know that until you work in your industry for some years (and even then you'll gain many other useful skills you can use elsewhere). A degree is an investment in yourself, and all investments have the inherent risk of not planning out. Accept it if it happens, and skill up for something else. Learning is life-long, don't feel bad if a few years of that learning wasn't what you initially had planned.


I did the same degree and had trouble finding an entry level position. I ended up going to tafe and getting a boilermaking apprenticeship and I haven't looked back. Plenty of trade roles suitable for women. I've worked alongside female boilermakers, mechanics and auto sparkies. Good luck and try not to let it overwhelm you


Honestly if you are feeling like this at this stage then it’s clearly not for you. Is there something else that is the rooting cause? Bad grades making finding a job impossible? Don’t have internship experience? If you’re finding this stuff as a hurdle then maybe try working for yourself? Look at occupations that enable you to be your own boss or start a company? Trades that you can be your own boss: all tradie jobs, opening a restaurant/franchise, florist etc Maybe specialty jobs like FIFO mine work or train driver, crane operator Good luck and you have plenty of time


I was in pretty much the same position as you 20 years ago. I ended up taking 6 months off then doing IT at TAFE. It ended up working out ok for me financially. But the job market at the moment is really good, maybe start applying for some jobs. I work for a government organisation and they are pretty much hiring anyone…


If you are into sustainability you should look into it, great career progress, booming industry and very short staffed. After a few year in the industry, recruiters will be knocking you non stop.


I’ll give you a job in fire suppression. Highest paid trade in Australia.


Maybe not the best suggestion because you’ll rack up more HECS debt, but post graduate degrees can be a good option for a change of career.


Apply to be a train driver or guard. They're always looking for fresh young'uns to train up! The money is good, benefits great and they pay you to study


I suggest reevaluating your life and what you want to do. FYI vast majority of ppl don’t really enjoy the job they do and many ppl realise after uni that’s not really what they want to do but they stick it out


I wouldn't stress your degree is a good one ! You'd be able to find some government projects or so many things you could jump into plus hex repayments are pretty low. Until then just get any more relaxed job until your ready for the next step


You dont have to pay it off until you start earning at a certain threshold. There is nothing stopping you from renting a small apartment or a sharehouse for \~200 a week, working part time at maccas and literally just existing. You can figure out what you wanna do after you take a few years break maybe.


Take a breath, graduating is hard. Target grad environmental roles with tier 1 contractors. Good pay and life balance


Do a graduate diploma of environmental health. It is another uni degree but will only take a year full time or a couple of years part time on top of the degree you are just about finished. You can do it by distance at several universities too. There's not enough EHOs at the moment and the pay is not bad. Side note: environmental health officers are also known as health officers and work on things in our environment that affects our health. They do food inspections, inspections of tattoo places and piercing parlours, mosquito control, noise complaints and more. Worth a look in.


Bruh, go to TAFE. Do something worthwhile (that makes you enjoy life). Even if you run uo the HECS debt and wind up in a job you hate, you're gonna be more miserable than saving that cash not switching to a trade. Look around at all the miserable people in the world, living in cubicles or doing menial jobs they hate just to pay the bills. Don't be us. Be better than us. By being happy.


Make sure your next step is what you really want, and be prepared to work for it. Sure, it's ok to change your mind. But sometimes on the path to contentment and new things, there's a lil devil on our shoulder telling us a bunch of negative stuff and we need to recognise them and say "yeah nah". Only you can know what's what


Tbh it's been like this 10 years ago. Work for mining companies.


Definately go for Tafe if you want. I dropped out on my last year of uni (bachelor of Commerce) to work full time at a bank. Racked up a 30k hecs debt and I still think it was the best decision dropping out. I


Hot take: move to the country and get an ag job. For every person that graduates with an ag degree there is something ridiculous like 5 jobs available. I’m sure there would be something available, there’s lots of wind farms always going up and solar farms I’m sure are relevant to your degree. Also could be a breath of fresh country air.


Hey, where are you located and what are you interested in from an environmental science perspective? Feel free to DM me if you want to talk about graduate opportunities. I've got a fair amount of experience and can lend a hand with guidance/mentoring if that helps. I'm an environmental engineer, btw, and work with enviro scientists on the daily.