Wellbeing as success

Celia Painter dropped out of traditional education during high school: now she has a BA in History and Philosophy, and a thirst to learn more. She will be speaking about her education journey at the graduation ceremony for the Faculties of Humanities and Social Sciences, Health, and Education on Wednesday 11 December.

A profile picture of a smiling female student in front of green bushes.
“As someone who struggled to complete high school, something I count as a personal success is reshuffling my values to be more positive,” says Celia.

“At school, my perfectionism ultimately led to me breaking down and having to drop out of mainstream school in year 13. While not at school, I focused more on wellbeing and learning, and very gradually began to shift my previously ingrained views of success. Learning to place more importance on mental wellbeing than accolades is something I’m proud of.”

Celia found the skills that she picked up while studying invaluable in processing and evaluating information around her, in the wider world. “Since studying history, when watching the news, going to the movies and in general conversation I’ve found myself thinking more about how events and issues are portrayed, such as whose perspective is being represented. And philosophy has been great for developing my skills in constructing a valuable argument.”

Her message for the new graduands will be around different ways of viewing success. She says, “To me, looking after yourself and those around you, taking a genuine interest in learning new things and picking up new skills, and standing up for what you believe in, is just as much of a success as landing your dream job.”

Celia has enrolled to complete a BA (Hons) in History in 2020.