Baguio to Melbourne: Mark’s story about studying Master of Special Education


Learn more about Mark's story and his experience as an international student at Torrens University.

Mark Quinones is from the Philippines and is currently studying a Master of Education (Special Education).

Tell us a bit about your background and where you are originally from.

I am a secondary teacher from the Philippines and taught literature in my hometown of Baguio. I am fond of exploration to the extent that a frequent trekking getaway was the norm for myself. It didn’t take long before this interest caused me to move across neighbouring countries in South East Asia until I have decided to settle down in Cambodia where I taught ESL and visual arts for around four years before deciding to pursue further studies in Australia.

How did you first hear about Torrens University and what made you decide to study with us?

I first learned about Torrens University Australia through the recommendation of my agent, FIRSTEC International, and a few acquaintances. Torrens offered the course that I needed to advance my career and enhance my pedagogy. Being a part of Laureate International Universities, Torrens also presented the opportunity for me to be a part of a massive international network.

What has been the highlight of studying at Torrens so far?

Throughout the course so far, there have been a series of highlights that will always stay with me as a person – professionally and personally. For one, the meaningful learning experiences I have had in my classes have allowed me to reflect on my teaching experiences and consequently shed light on classroom instances I previously couldn’t understand the rationale behind. My lecturers are adept and very effective in facilitating our learning; their passion and expertise are truly commendable. It is also worth noting that the sense of community in our multicultural classes allows us to immerse ourselves into meaningful learning experiences and enjoy our stay in Australia.

What was it like leaving home and moving to Australia to study?

Leaving my comfort zone and moving to Australia was a big move for me, however, it is one the best decisions i have made in my life because of the unique experiences and opportunities Australia itself presents. More importantly, the locals and the people I have met from different countries is what makes my Aussie experience truly something that would stick with me for a lifetime.

What do you like most about living and studying in Australia?

I love the laid-back, multicultural and artsy vibe of Australia and of Melbourne specifically. For me, living and studying in this context is what makes the Aussie learning experience truly unique and meaningful.

How has your time at Torrens prepared you for a career?

My time at Torrens has allowed me to acquire and further hone skills that enables me to widen my perspectives regarding issues specific to education. More importantly, Torrens has equipped me with person-first approaches with regards to championing the uniqueness of every individual.

What do you hope to do after you graduate?

Being better equipped, I will utilise my learning and go back to teaching. At the same time, I hope to start a children’s learning museum where learners of various neuro types can learn about arts, science, music, etc – all tailored to their learning abilities.


Want to study in Australia? Learn more about what it’s like to study with us as an International Student.

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