Nervous about starting at a new school in 2020? We hear you. SEDA Alumni, Robbie Cox, shares with us his helpful tips, advice and things to expect during your first few weeks at SEDA College as a new student.
What were you most nervous about when starting at SEDA and how did you overcome this?
When I arrived at SEDA, I was mostly nervous about the new environment and if I would get along with the students in my class.
Luckily, I realised pretty quickly that we all had similar interests. The first commute on the train and walk to the venue was quite daunting and I didn’t know what to expect. Fortunately, there were many people on the same train line including returning students which made the adjustment easier.
What were you most excited about before starting at SEDA?
Before starting SEDA, the thing that stood out to me was the opportunity to work with some of Australia’s elite sporting athletes and organisations. Being aligned with the Melbourne Stars and Cricket Australia, I was excited to see the work that goes on behind the scenes and meet the people who make the premier sporting events happen.
How did you find making new friends and meeting new people?
Fortunately for me, I already knew a few of my classmates through cricket. In saying that, many students in our group went into day one not knowing anyone. When you spend 9am to 3pm with the same people nearly every day, rather than jumping from class to class, it’s easy getting to know your new classmates!
How did you find the adjustment of getting yourself to your venue via public transport and what did you do to prepare yourself for this?
Admittedly, it was a bit of a shock wrapping my head around it all. My old school was only a few KMs away so I wasn’t familiar with PTV until SEDA. In the summer holidays, I downloaded the PTV app and planned my journey. Then did a practice run on public transport in the lead up to my first day, which allowed me to find my bearings and work out which bus or train got me to the venue on time.
Once you meet all your classmates, you’ll find others who travel in a similar direction to you and it’ll quickly become second nature.
How did you find making friends with your new classmates?
It’s funny how you learn about mutual connections. Whether it’s through sport, old school mates or friends; discovering mutual connections really helped when getting to know your classmates and starting conversations. Taking about an old coach you might have both been taught by or discovering that you both played in the same cricket competition for the past few years. Regardless of this, friendships form quite naturally when you have lots of interests in common.
Was there anything that your teacher did to help you adjust to your new school?
My teacher was a superstar! He was so supportive, positive and would go out of his way to make sure all students felt welcomed and valued. You can guarantee that the first thing he would ask you on a Monday morning when you walked through the door was ‘How’d you go on the weekend?’ Referring your game or any other activities you participate in. He helped us get to know one another by playing ice-breakers, and made sure we weren’t spending all our time with the same people. This helped us create a really great class culture that made coming to school every day really enjoyable.
What advice would you give to new students who are about to start their SEDA journey
Network as much as possible! Opportunities can come from anywhere. Whether its people watching you coach, hand out giveaways at matches or a passing conversation in the hallway. First impressions are everything, so always give your all and you will be rewarded for your efforts.
Also, a firm handshake can go a long way!
What were some of the skills you gained during your time at SEDA that you use now in your professional career?
I have had amazing opportunities to work in numerous sporting organisations; gaining a great deal of independence, lots of organisation skills as well as learning how to properly network. Often, these skills are non-negotiable when working in a fast-paced environment like a sporting club.
What was something that you were told when starting your SEDA journey that you would pass on to students about to start their journey?
Always say yes to volunteer work regardless of the job you’re being asked to do. One thing can lead to another and if you’re willing to do a job someone else won’t do, I guarantee you’ll be offered more responsibilities when the opportunity arises.