Skip main navigation

My PEF Degree

My PEF Degree
After finishing my high school education at The National School of the Arts as the top overall art achiever I wanted to go to university and complete a degree in Fine Art. My challenge was that it was an expensive course and without assistance I would not have been able to study. I turned to PEF where I found the needed assistance. I then went through the application process, and found the missionary couples a great resource when applying, as they were knowledgeable, kind and encouraging throughout. One of the requirements was to complete a career workshop. I found it to be very useful and I still use many of the skills I acquired from the course to this day when looking to improve my employment situation. Upon completing the workshop I was approached to teach the course under the guidance of the missionary couple that taught me. I enjoyed engaging with the material in a different way and teaching those that attended my class. I was then able to pursue my degree and later completed my Honors in Fine Art and started working as a studio photographer the next year.
Gemma Faerch (B).jpg

There were challenges and great demands that came with choosing a university degree as opposed to a technical college or vocational school. I have learned a great deal of creative thinking, research skills, how to be objective, and how to be effective in considering and arguing a point eloquently. In pursuit of a better paying job, because photography wasn’t paying very well at the time, I had to be flexible and find alternative work. I then decided to do a Post-Graduate Certificate in Education with UNISA in 2011 as there were opportunities of employment in teaching. It would only require a small addition to my current qualification. This would enable me to assist my husband with the bills and provide flexibility as we were starting our family.

I understood the importance of the program and the advantages that it had offered me. It was a very proud day when I completed the repayment of my loan at the end of 2014. I know that by doing this I was allowing someone else the opportunity to be educated. I increased the minimum repayment requirement significantly to ensure that I was able to complete my commitment early. I worked and studied part-time to ensure that I could meet this payment every month.

Today, I am working as a Graphic Designer. I design mobile applications and websites. I do believe that the job I have now is an answer to fervent prayer. My employers are fair and kind, and my work is varied and exciting. I get great joy from seeing my work in the market and this success has been as a result of a culmination of my experiences and my education. PEF has given me the opportunity to do what I love. I am able to meet my commitments in the home and I am able to fulfill my calling as a counsellor in the stake Primary presidency.

I would advise those hoping to improve their education to choose a school that provides vocational support as well as a reputable education in a field that has a definitive career path. Choose something that will provide for you and your family, something that will make you excited to go to work every day. Be committed to the program and pay back your loan so that others can be blessed as you have been.