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Aurrora De Monte

MSc Child and Youth Care Studies

What were your reasons for taking on a postgraduate degree, and why did you decide to study at Strathclyde University?

I decided on Strathclyde because they were offering a program that fit my needs (online, part-time, geared towards working professionals). I was familiar with the excellent work CELCIS has done in the field of Child and Youth Care (CYC) and the qualified staff and faculty that were running the course. I felt confident that I would receive high-quality education and support as I proceeded through the program.

I wanted to pursue further education in Child and Youth Care studies, one that supported my passion as a practitioner and as an educator in the field of CYC.   

What do you like about your course/ department/ faculty/ Strathclyde? 

I am someone who appreciates challenge and this course provides opportunities to challenge myself in a variety of settings. The classroom environment is respectful and nurturing. Faculty provide tangible, and supportive feedback that promotes learning and reflective practice. This international, online course provides diversity and depth to my understanding of theory, policy and practice of Child and Youth Care worldwide.  

What specialist knowledge / professional skills have you developed whilst studying the course?

Not only have I increased my knowledge and analysis of theoretical foundations, but have also been challenged in my application of developmental theories, and encouraged to critically reflect on management and leadership in practice. All of these areas are directly linked to my work as a practitioner and as an educator.

We have had the pleasure of using Video Enhanced Reflective Practice (VERP) as a tool to promote relational practice. This approach is congruent with the values of Child and Youth Care and provide practitioners a strength-based method promoting positive self reflection on the development of attuned communication.    

How is your course specifically helping to enhance you current career / prepare for your future career?

I both teach in a CYC program at the College level in Canada and maintain practice as a direct-service practitioner. The knowledge and skills that I gain in this program support my competency development as a practitioner, and promote and facilitate my growth as an educator. The knowledge and skills gained contribute to holistic course refinement and development and support my relational practice with colleagues and students, as well as with the young people I have the pleasure of working with.   

What are your ambitions for the future? How do you think your postgraduate degree, and your time at Strathclyde, will help you achieve your goals

I would like to pursue a PhD in Child and Youth Care Studies, continue to teach in this field that I am passionate about, and continue to practice with children, youth, families, promoting and celebrating our unique profession along the way. This program is a stepping stone to help me achieve these goals and support my continued development and growth. I am appreciative for the opportunity to be a part of such a program. 

What have been the main challenges studying at postgraduate level?

The challenges that I have experienced surround the balancing of life, practice, and education. I am most grateful for the compassion of the faculty and their commitment to work alongside, and with me, as I pursue this goal of further education.