University and desired employment is one step closer for the most recent graduates of the Pathways program.
Run in partnership between South Coast Careers College and the University of Wollongong Bega campus, participants complete a Certificate IV then a bridging component with the uni.
For those who did not finish Year 12 at school or anyone older wanting to start university, it provides them a pathway to achieving their goals.
Those in nursing have to do 120 hours of work placement at an aged care facility and South Coast Careers College has found many end up with jobs after their placements.
Bega's Liz Faulkner, 44, and Ellie Grant, 19, were two of the students who finished the Nursing Pathway.
Both plan on studying nursing at the Bega UOW campus, and while Ms Grant wants to go on to become a midwife Ms Faulkner wants to travel to remote communities with her degree or work with Mercy Ships.
"I like the caring nature of nursing and I feel it's giving back to people," Ms Faulkner said.
"I've always felt really fulfilled knowing I helped someone else," Ms Grant said.
She said some parts of the Pathways program were more challenging than others, but overall she thought it was a really good experience.
"I learnt a really good work-life balance, that was good to recognise before going to university and getting smashed with a lot of work," she said.
"I was unsure if I could do three years of university, but this course gave me the confidence to do it," Ms Faulkner said.
The Pathways program has been running for six years in the Bega Valley.