Damian: Did you know it’s okay to change your QTAC preferences?

Damian Leggat was 2015’s proud Team Captain for USQ's Australian Uni Games team. Damian is studying a Bachelor of Business and is an avid touch player.


As a first year uni student, I experienced firsthand how stressful it is to try and sort your life out and choose what career path you want to follow after finishing high school.

What made it even harder was the fact that after high school, most of my friends planned to move away to study and were making great progress towards fulfilling their life goals, while I was struggling to choose which TV series I wanted to binge-watch next.

Many teenagers can be indecisive, whether we’re deciding on what to have for dinner, what filter to add to our latest selfie or when making those important life choices about careers and study.

Wind back to grade 12 when I was at home staying up until midnight, waiting to see my OP results. I was with a few friends and we were all anxiously waiting to see what the last 12 years of our lives had actually led to! My preferences were set and I was all ready to move to Brisbane and study at university.

Midnight clocked over and the results were in. I’d received an OP of 8—exactly what I needed to move down to Brisbane and study my desired program.

I was very excited, but at the same time I was very anxious at the thought of attending classes with over 300 other students. I don’t have a problem with large groups, but I just wasn’t sure how well I would cope academically if I had to compete with hundreds of other people for the lecturer’s attention.

I discussed these concerns with my parents and that was when my dad suggested USQ. Being a graduate of USQ, my dad had some insight into what classes were like at as well as the great support available to students. It was comforting to hear and I definitely took notice of his recommendation.

After weighing up other factors, such as the amount of money I could save by staying at home instead of moving and the smaller class sizes at USQ, I decided to change my QTAC preferences. My decision to choose the cheaper option of living at home proved to be a good one as staying at home provided me with the opportunity to travel overseas with the money I saved in my first year.

The process of changing my preferences was really easy and was all completed through the QTAC website using 1 of my 3 free preference changes. I placed the Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Business dual degree at USQ as my first preference and was offered a place to study in the January offer round. After lots of hard work and one program change, I can say that I’m extremely happy with my decision. Not only am I happy with my grades, which are where they are now because of the support from academic staff, but I’ve had the opportunity to give my studies a practical edge with paid roles at the uni. I’ve worked for the Student Services team as well as getting out and about as a Student Ambassador during my time at USQ.

I was also given the opportunity to captain USQ at the 2015 Australian University Games at the Gold Coast. The week was a great opportunity for students to take a break from studying and enjoy a week at the coast playing sport with their mates. I was honoured to have been asked to captain the team and note it down as one of the best experiences of my life.

The great thing about all of this is that, no matter what decision you make, you aren’t locked into that choice forever.

Have you changed your mind about your preferences as well? Don’t waste another precious moment! Head to the QTAC change of preference guide to put USQ at the top of your list. You're only five clicks away. Not sure about USQ? You will be after you listen to Alice. 


Related:

Emma: How not to preference

Alice: How to find the uni that fits you best

Emily: Uni life myths busted