Bachelor of Arts and Sciences (Majors History and Chemistry)
Diploma of Music (Practical Violin)
A Melbournian born and bred, I went to high school in Footscray in the Western Suburbs of Melbourne before studying at the University of Melbourne for 5 years. A bit of a 'jack of all trades' I’ve been a waitress, barista, checkout chick, actor and violin teacher most recently. I was lucky enough to study one of my history subjects with my university overseas in Germany, and since the trip in 2006 have been learning German. My position in the Graduate program with DEWHA is my first “real job” out of uni and my first time living interstate.
Arts Policy section, Arts Policy and Access branch
My first rotation was a pretty ‘pure’ policy placement- my section dealt with many briefs and ministerial correspondence, liaising between the Australia Council (who provides funds for arts programs and organisations through grants) and the department. As all Arts funding is deliberately arms length from the Government, I found it challenging at times as it was hard to see the tangible outcomes of the work the section did, but the knowledge I gained of department writing styles and conventions was very valuable.
During my rotation I had a chance to work on the tender process for the resale royalty rights for visual artist’s bill as well as at Question Time Brief on the Bill Henson issue and the depiction of children in artwork.
Water Recovery Policy section, Water Recovery Branch
Three weeks in to my second rotation, I have hit the ground running and it’s quite exciting. I’m in the water recovery section which deals with the water buybacks for the environment in the Murray Darling Basin. The work is fast and constantly changing with the largest purchase of water entitlements in Australian history of $303 million being announced in my second week in the section.
As well as helping to process contracts for water entitlement purchases I am developing a communications strategy for internal communication across the ever growing water group, so we can all better understand the links between programs and how they all work together to help the environment.
I would definitely recommend a rotation in the water group to everyone coming in to the Graduate Program- it is one of the most exciting and dynamic parts of the department today; constantly changing, relevant and exciting.
Ozone and Synthetic Gas team, Environment Protection Branch
The Ozone team is a large and varied one, dealing with restricted imports into the country, international negotiations with the Montreal Protocol, the phase out of Methyl bromide and the refrigeration and air conditioning industry.
My rotation was to develop a policy proposal looking at ways to reduce the amount of refrigerant vented from split-system air conditioners and included being able to spend a day with a tradie to see how a split-system is actually installed and decommissioned and a trip to the coast to see a local council refrigerant reclaim program.
The Ozone team is a great one to work in, not least for the frequent sharing of Yes Minister and Hollowmen DVDs around the office and was somewhere I learnt a lot about the public service and the process of getting policy from an idea, to a proposal, to legislation and somewhere I’d definitely recommend to any grads coming into the Department.
Water Recovery Analysis section, Water Recovery Branch
In the end, I was drawn back to working in water and went back to the same branch as my second rotation. I’m going to be conducting a review of the purchase program tender round that closed at the end of financial year and look forward to building upon my water expertise gained through the Grad Program. As a city girl, I thought I’d have an interest in urban water or desalination, and have ended up knowing more than I ever thought I would about irrigation in the Murray-Darling Basin and love it. It’s really great to find an area where I feel I’m contributing daily to the health of our river systems and can see the results through the Department’s environmental watering.
'the best thing about working for us ... is the environment'