Carolyn O'Neil has perfected the art of juggling full-time study with work and raising a family.
The anaesthetic technician went from being a stay-at-home mother to seven children to studying and working four years ago.
"I became aware my marriage was going to end and I realised unless I wanted to live on the minimum wage for the rest of my life, I should get a career," Ms O'Neil said.
"I couldn't decide between anaesthetic technology and science and I was accepted into both."
Ms O'Neil completed a certificate in anaesthetic technology at the Central Institute in 2011 and is due to graduate from Edith Cowan University next year with a bachelor of arts in science.
She works at Hollywood Hospital as a technician and hopes her studies will lead to achieving her lifelong dream of becoming a doctor.
"I grew up wanting to be a doctor, and I've applied to medical school," she said.
Ms O'Neil has not looked back since she embarked on her life change.
"I wanted to rebuild my future and reclaim my life, and education is a great way to do that," she said.
Her story is an example of the career paths on display at the upcoming Skills West Expo.
The expo, scheduled for September 18 to 20 at Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre, promotes training and workforce development.