Teagan making her way through second Masters qualification in ECEC, at only 24
Teagan Armstrong is an early childhood education and care (ECEC) professional who has overcome challenges in her own education to emerge as someone with a passion for working with vulnerable children, completing her second Masters qualification at the young age of 24.
Ms Armstrong left school in year 11 and “fell into” a childcare traineeship at 17, later completing a Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care at TAFE NSW Wollongong and a Bachelor degree at TAFE NSW Shellharbour.
“I grew up in a non-traditional family,” she explained, “and there was always this stereotype around my type of upbringing, so I was determined to help the future generation of vulnerable kids feel like they belonged.”
“Many of the families at the centre I worked at were from Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander backgrounds, and had intergenerational unemployment and other challenges,” Ms Armstrong continued, “and my mission is to inspire these kids to know that even if they’re from a non-traditional household, they can still succeed in life.”
Ms Armstrong is now a supervisor at Oxford Multicultural Childcare in Wollongong and has a Master of Education and a partially completed Master of Research. She is hoping to use her qualifications and experience to do a deep dive into the early childhood sector and inform government policy about its future direction.
As thousands of local Year 12 students countdown to next month’s HSC, Ms Armstrong said her experience highlighted the many different pathways to finding a rewarding career.
“I’m a huge advocate for TAFE NSW and I couldn’t have done this without the flexible learning and expert teaching they provided,” she added. “I was working full-time the whole time I did my degree and they allowed me to do night lectures and summer school so I could complete it.”
To find out more about studying early childhood education at TAFE NSW, call 13 16 01 or visit www.tafensw.edu.au