People and organisation coordinator

Melanie Fisher’s studies strengthened her time management, communication and analytical skills and gave her an understanding of different ideologies.

Melanie Fisher

Key facts

Career: People and organisation coordinator at Mars New Zealand
Programme: Bachelor of Arts, Graduate Diploma in Arts
Subjects: Education, Sociology, Employment Relations and Organisational Studies

"I currently work as a people and organisation coordinator at Mars New Zealand. It is a varied role involving the coordination of annual training, annual conferences and other events, health, safety and wellbeing, employee on-boarding and off-boarding, objectives and development plans, engagement projects, rewards and benefits, and the list goes on! I am very lucky to be a part of a rare workplace culture doing what I love, and really progressing in the HR space.

"My double major in Education and Sociology was originally meant to lead the way to a career in teaching. However in my last year, I developed a passion for management and business in addition to my love of learning and development.

"The great thing about the Faculty of Arts is that it is flexible, and allows for and encourages personal growth and aspirations. I spoke with a faculty member who advised me that I could undertake a Graduate Diploma in Arts in Employment Relations and Organisational Studies. This tied in with my previous degree, and added business and management substance and challenge.

"I think the greatest asset I have gained through my study has been my understanding of people, of different ideologies and approaches, management, and business. Along with this, I have strengthened my time management, communication and analytical skills, which has thoroughly helped me in all of my roles.

"Like most people applying for university, I didn't know exactly where I wanted to end up career-wise. I didn't want to pigeonhole myself into a particular career path when I was oblivious to the many different roles that exist. Coming from a rural background, exposure to areas such as human resources is basically non-existent.

"Studying for a Bachelor of Arts meant that I could pursue courses in areas such as Criminology, Statistics, Accounting and Education and gain a wider understanding and skill set, while leaving my career options open.

"Each year, I became more and more confident in the things I enjoyed, and the things I didn't enjoy as much. This guided me to narrow my focus, and concentrate on career options supported by these aspects."