How the pastoral team has supported me to complete my masters whilst working full time
Student spotlight | Kate Greaves, MA in Childhood Studies and Early Years (distance learning)
Kate is a nursery teacher from Newcastle, currently living and working full-time in Abu Dhabi. Currently completing her MA in Childhood Studies and Early Years via distance learning, Kate has benefited from the support of her course’s Pastoral Team.
Tell us a bit about yourself and what drew you to the MA in Childhood Studies and Early Years?
I graduated as a primary school teacher in 2015 and taught in my home city of Newcastle for three years before moving to Abu Dhabi in 2018 to work as a nursery teacher. I thoroughly enjoy teaching as every day is different with children, and they bring fun and happiness into each day.
I’ve been living in Abu Dhabi for three years now and I love it. The landscape is stunning, I much prefer the weather here, and work-life balance is also much more manageable.
I decided to study an MA in Childhood Studies and Early Years at Leeds Beckett University, as I wanted to progress in my career and become an early years specialist.
How did you find out about the Pastoral Care Team? Did you know about the Pastoral Service prior to choosing your course and did this impact your decision?
Most of my lecturers made us aware that Carnegie School of Education had its own Pastoral Care Team, and that we could contact them for support if we ever had trouble meeting deadlines or had a lot of stress going on. As I am working full-time alongside my Masters it is often quite hectic, and one time I misread one of my deadlines and thought I had longer than I did. I realised I needed an extension and was very stressed about the situation and so I decided to contact the Pastoral Care Team.
How has the Pastoral Team helped you?
I was able to get help with applying for an extension and I also have ‘check-in’ meetings every 2-3 weeks to check that I am managing my workload and remembering to take time for myself. I immediately felt like a weight had been lifted after speaking to Nicola, she was so calm with me and assured me everything would be okay. This allowed me to then focus on my other assignments that were due.
What has been your favourite thing about your time studying at Carnegie School of Education?
My favourite part of studying at Leeds Beckett, apart from the degree itself, has to be how friendly everyone has been and the friendships I have made. Headingley Campus is in a great location and the accommodation Leeds Beckett provides has always been convenient, clean and enjoyable to be in. I’ve experienced living in the city and the suburbs, and can confidently say that Leeds is one of the best student cities to live in and study. From the amazing people you meet, to the social scene and nightlife available it’s been so much fun and really helps you grow as a person.
How would you describe the Pastoral Team’s service?
I’m so grateful for the Pastoral Team, Nicola has been brilliant at keeping me calm and supporting me through submitting my assignments. As I am away from my family, this past year has been extremely difficult with the pandemic and not being able to travel home. Nicola was very aware of that and reminded me to take time for myself and my own mental wellbeing. She checks in on me and makes sure I’m okay and it’s really comforting to know I have someone in the university who is simply there to help and give advice.