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Student story

Tyler Davies

20 July 2023

Ngāi Tahu

"UC is very community driven and I loved that aspect..."


(Ngāi Tahu)

Bachelor of Social Work with Honours

Residential Worker, Oranga Tamariki

As an advocate for empowering and supporting others, Tyler’s Bachelor of Social Work studies have given her an amazing insight into how her passion can help our society.

“There are so many things I enjoy about my degree,” she says. “Studying Social Work has given me the opportunity to view the world from an open and more understanding lens. While studying Social Work it is important to strive for the improvement of the lives of others.”

After learning more about the role of social workers, Tyler was quick to choose her university studies to gain professional training in working with clients and directly affecting positive change.

“I wanted to go into a dual sector that could not only work within the government to make changes to law and legislation, but also work amongst the people and communities who are in need of help and support,” she says.

“There are many diverse areas social work covers with a diverse range of people. This Bachelor’s touches on many of these aspects such as child protection, mental health, disability, poor economic environments, and many more.

“Another aspect of Social Work that I enjoy is learning the best ways to approach certain situations. This has helped me in many aspects of my life and has given me insight into culture, religion, different economic environments, etc, and how to be competent and sensitive with clients and show them that you respect their diversity, and are aware of privilege and power and how this may contribute to disadvantage and marginalisation.”

When looking for a university, Tyler found UC had a “standout” Social Work programme compared to other options.

“UC is also very community driven and I loved that aspect,” she says. “Everyone is so welcoming and warm, especially in the Social Work Department. Because I am a social person who finds empathy and patience important, this is something I personally need within my study. I can confidentially say that the majority of UC staff and students possess these qualities.”

Her classmates have also been a source of support and inspiration for Tyler.

“Together we can motivate each other and inspire to become better each and every day. Social work is a very hands-on degree and can be emotionally straining at times because of the material that is covered. But if you’re passionate enough then you’ll be fine!”

Even during her degree, Tyler has been doing volunteer work for a variety of charity and non-profit organisations, including a fundraiser for the SPCA which included doing a 130,000 ft skydive.

She also works outside of study with the school-care programme Kidz Time, which has inspired her to go into the child protection domain after she graduates.

Recently Tyler has gained work with Oranga Tamariki as a Residential Worker, which has steered her even further along her desired career path in youth mental health.

“I hope to make a difference within these vocations and challenge any stigma that may surround children who have been affected by abuse, families who are stuck in the cycle of violence, and persons affected by mental illness,’ she says.

“Make sure you’re passionate about cultural and social issues within not only New Zealand, but the world.”

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