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Jarrod Loidl

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Master of Business Administration

I work as a Senior Security Consultant with Dimension Data. My role is exceptionally demanding and requires ongoing learning and continual updating of my skills, both on the job and outside of work. In addition to this, I’m also a father and my partner has recently returned to the workforce after giving birth. As such, I have to juggle my study commitments across all three while ensuring my own sanity!  

I have returned to complete Masters of Business Administration (MBA) nine years after completing my Bachelor’s degree – and wishing I had started a whole lot sooner! I hope you find my experience as a working professional, a parent and a post-graduate student, helpful.

Why Deakin off-campus studies?
As I am working full time as a consultant and a Dad, it is important to me to be close to, and supportive of, my family as possible and have flexible study arrangements. Studying off campus was the only real option in my opinion.  

I had earned my Bachelors degree at Deakin found it served me well.  I also researched Masters degree programs with many other universities and I felt Deakin was the only one that had the right mix of theoretical and practical knowledge transfer, as well as being the most flexible university to study with.

My biggest challenge was definitely trying to find time to study for exams, work and sleep, particularly when facing difficult subjects, while dealing with a teething infant and a partner that’s returning to the work force!

The way I manage it is to have dedicated nights of the week that I devote to study. I then (try to) make sure those nights are locked in and reserved for study. If you’re living with your significant other, talking to them about reserved study nights and keeping them informed of your work load was the best advice I receive.

Successes and aspirations
I think it is too early to say what my biggest success is yet.  I think completing my degree will be my largest one yet.  Having said that, just starting my MBA was huge mental hurdle. I knew it would be a massive undertaking but it was important to me to set myself a new challenge of learning something completely different to anything I’d done before. My long term goal is to run my own business and I think my MBA will definitely help me to achieve that.

Study tips and advice for new off-campus students
Make use of CloudDeakin and Library. They are awesome. The ability to have books ordered from the Library and sent directly to you (with free shipping back) and not have to step into the Library personally, is a Godsend to someone with a shocking schedule like mine! Also, CloudDeakin is your portal to communicating with your lecturers and students and vice versa – make good use of it.

Here are a few more tips:

  • When starting a unit, understand the assessment criteria. Focus on that in every unit.
  • Finish your assignments EARLY. Hit the books hard early so you can ease up later in the trimester or focus on exams. Most people do the exact opposite.
  • When studying for exams, ALWAYS go back over prior exams!
  • If you do not understand something, do not be shy about asking your lecturers either via cloudDeakin or email.
  • Know your limitations and when to take a break, whether it be for one night or one trimester. Be prepared to scale back the work as needed.

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21st February 2013