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Amanda-Lee’s career takes an eventful turn

Busy mum of two, Amanda-Lee Shoebridge had many different careers before she enrolled with TAFE Queensland to turn her natural flair for organising events into a career. 

"I've been a factory worker, an actress, a salesperson, worked behind a bar, and before studying, I worked at Baby Give Back, a charity that supports vulnerable people in South East Queensland and Northern NSW," explains Amanda-Lee.

"I've always loved bringing people together and hosting events, and people have always said I should do it for a living. I then looked into studying events and discovered that TAFE Queensland offered Virtual Classroom, which perfectly fit into my busy mum lifestyle."

Studying for the Diploma of Event Management (SIT50322) through TAFE Queensland's Virtual Classroom allowed Amanda-Lee the ultimate 100% online learning experience, which was perfect for her lifestyle.

"When I discovered the virtual classrooms with a live teacher, I learned I could access scheduled virtual interactive classrooms from my home office without any on-campus commitments. It combined all the benefits of face-to-face learning in a fun and interactive way, and I learned so much," she explained.

The virtual classroom offered Amanda-Lee online course delivery without compromising on the quality of her education, fitting in with her busy lifestyle. She also enjoyed real-time interaction and learning between her classmates and teachers.

"I enjoyed the full-day classes that involved a guest speaker, assignment presentations and content,” she said.

The flexibility of the course allowed Amanda-Lee to also study anytime from anywhere; with each class recorded, Amanda-Lee could fit her studies around her work and family commitments as she earned her diploma qualification.

"I studied the best topics through this course, and because it was delivered from an accredited organisation in a way that suited me, I earned a qualification recognised by the industry," Amanda-Lee said.

The advanced-level qualification gave her the specialised skills and knowledge to be an expert event manager capable of creating memorable experiences. She also learnt to lead and manage people, coordinate marketing activities and manage financial budgets.

Her teacher, Paula Battilana, helped Amanda-Lee become an event manager. Her industry experience ensures that she teaches her students the relevant hands-on skills employers look for and insights into where the sector is headed.

"Paula was an excellent teacher; her wealth of knowledge was astonishing, and I believe I got the most out of the course because she was my teacher - I respected her industry knowledge so much.”

"She was also my biggest supporter; she was always available to help with my studies, finding employment, building my resume, and answering industry questions throughout the year. I owe a lot of my personal and professional growth to Paula."

"She encouraged, listened to, and motivated me to keep going. She helped me break down problems so I could see they weren't as big as I thought, supported me with time management and technology, and helped me overcome other things I struggled with as a mature-aged student," said Amanda-Lee.

Now an events graduate, Amanda-Lee has gained the confidence to start her own event styling business, Up Events, on the Gold Coast with aspirations to become a major events company one day.

"I'm working with private and corporate clients, setting up gorgeous events and having a blast doing it! I even had the opportunity to set up a backdrop at my girlfriend's engagement party that turned into a surprise wedding," Amanda-Lee continued.

"I'd love to see Up Events grow and specialise in large-scale activations and experiences for clients, driven by a team of like-minded event gurus working across Australia while I keep my number one job of being a mum!"

Amanda-Lee credits her teachers, her course, and its flexible delivery for giving her the skills and confidence to change careers and begin working in an industry she's passionate about.

"This course taught me that I'm more capable than I gave myself credit for and a big thank you goes to the support my partner Ben gave me and my boys, which allowed me to log on to every class.”

“Even as a busy working mum of two young children, I achieved big things, and I’m now becoming who I always wanted to be," concluded Amanda-Lee.