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Steven Karras, recent graduate of the Graduate Certificate of Regulation and Governance, talks about his experience as a student at the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet)—from the highlights of studying the degree to the challenges faced—and how completing it has benefited him both personally and professionally.
What was your trajectory before commencing the Graduate Certificate of Regulation and Governance?
I have moved from the private legal industry into government, first with what is now known as the Department of Home Affairs and currently with state government leading professional standards regulating the behaviours of officers which builds professionalism. This in turn allows for respectful interaction among officers and incarcerated people or offenders in the community which directly contributes to reducing recidivism.
What motivated you to complete the Graduate Certificate of Regulation and Governance?
In all my roles, I found the study of law and business useful but engaging with people and processes and decision making required me to operate and think differently about how to better achieve outcomes. The graduate certificate highlighted, both in theory and practice, how this can be achieved. This included more thought to identify and better engage with actors and networks, drawing on a range of people to collectively solve problems and overall better understanding of what makes up complex and dynamic environments.
Why did you choose the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet), ANU for your studies?
I knew it to be a world class institution and highly respected within the public service, particularly around public policy. After researching a range of courses, RegNet’s approach resonated strongly in what I thought I needed to learn to be an effective public service senior executive.
How has the Graduate Certificate of Regulation and Governance degree benefited you?
Personally, I am now engaging better with the world around me, reading news and articles more critically and having more meaningful discussions. It allows you to look beyond some of the surface level rhetoric and potentially biased agendas. Likewise, professionally when regulating professional standards behaviours or implementing policies, it allows me to engage better with the people around me and consider contextual things within my operating environment. In a practical sense I feel that I can contribute to bigger ideas and solve some quite complex problems.
What was the biggest challenge in the completion of your degree and how did you overcome it?
Probably the gap between academic studies and gaining the confidence to write more scholarly. The support from lecturers and staff helped quell that concern quickly.
What are some of the highlights of your experience as a student at RegNet?
The inspirational staff tackling some big and important issues affecting the community we live in, and direct access to world-class leaders and specialist in their fields. The learning platform is intuitive.
What was the biggest highlight of completing the Graduate Certificate of Regulation and Governance degree and why?
Largely mentioned throughout all the responses, I will add that I feel more confident commissioning and implementing policies through constructive discussions with policy makers, thus allowing me to better deliver policies and directions.
What are your plans now that you completed the Graduate Certificate of Regulation and Governance degree?
I am now undertaking the Master in Regulation and Governance for many of the reasons above but also the contemporary subjects on offer. Responding to real issues in real time through is a huge draw card.
How would you describe your experience as a student at RegNet?
Inspiring. Inclusive. RegNet values all perspectives and so it practices what it preaches. The RegNet community is extremely welcoming and values all experiences and backgrounds including less scholarly students (such as me).