Choosing a career in childcare after more than 30 years in the fashion industry is one of the best decisions he has ever made, according to Jeff Winfield. And it’s the course he did at Northern Beaches & Mosman College that helped him get there.
He looks forward to work each day and the Narrabeen local has swapped a daily commute of up to 90 minutes one-way for a short drive that he now makes with his two-year-old son Jack.
“I just really like spending time with children. They are all so different and have such different personalities and I find the whole experience really rewarding,” Jeff explained.
Gone are the days of being away from home from 5:30am to 7pm; Jeff enjoys being at home more and with his son Jack now enrolled at the centre where Jeff works, he gets to see him far more than his previous professional role allowed.
Jeff signed up for Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care CHC30113 at the College in 2020 after being furloughed from work and spending more time caring for his toddler son. “I found I just really liked spending time with Jack, and I looked into what courses were available at Northern Beaches and Mosman College,” he added.
He mixed studying two days a week with working at a childcare centre, gaining valuable experience in the industry he was entering. “I knew online study was available, but I really like going into college to do classes and I enjoy the interaction with trainers and other students.
“The college was a great fit for me, and I can’t speak highly enough about the trainers and how supportive all the staff are. They were just really keen to assist me in finding a way to make this new path work.”
Jeff accepted a significant pay cut by changing career paths but being able to work and study meant the family was able to manage and enjoy the fact he was working close to home.
“Working and studying really showed me what the industry was all about as I gained the qualifications I needed. The course really prepared me for the job and meant I felt more confident in this new environment,” Jeff stated.
Having completed his Certificate III Jeff has now embarked on the Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care CHC50113. He attends the Narrabeen campus one day a week and has been able to study as a trainee, earning while he learns.
He believes starting with the Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care CHC30113 (Certificate III in Early Childhood Education & Care) before taking on the Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care CHC50113 (Diploma of Early Childhood Education & Care – Existing Worker) was ideal as it laid the groundwork for studying and completing tasks and assessments. “The Diploma is a step up for me in terms of being harder and involving more research as you are working towards being a room leader, but I really enjoy it,” he reflected.
In an industry dominated by women, Jeff is pleased to be a male role model for the children, who he learns from each day. He has always believed he has a young outlook but said the children keep him young at heart.
For more information on Early Childcare courses click on the links below:
Training may be subsidised by the NSW govt RTO ID 90113