7 February 2017
It is a challenge that few professionals take up in their first year out of university, but USC graduate dietitian Charlotte Bush would not have it any other way.
Ms Bush, 25, who grew up in Gladstone, has set up her own private practice in the heart of Queensland’s Granite Belt after graduating with first class Honours in Nutrition and Dietetics from USC last year.
“Even though it is not usually the done thing, I always knew that I wanted to go into private practice and through my study at USC, I felt confident to go straight into running my own health and fitness business,” she said.
When her partner took up a job as a winemaker in Stanthorpe, Ms Bush decided the region would be ideal for her business Total Balance Health and Fitness, which combines fitness training with a range of nutrition and dietetic services.
“Initially it was a huge learning curve as I had very little understanding of running a business but that is an aspect of the job that I now love,” Ms Bush said.
“In the six months since opening I have expanded my services to include Stanthorpe and Tenterfield.”
She said the experience and professional connections gained during industry placements as part of her degree had helped to prepare her for the challenges of running a private practice in a rural area.
Ms Bush also credited her degree with developing her ability to simplify and solve often complicated health conditions for clients.
“My Honours program helped me to develop my research and increased my drive and passion for applying evidenced-based nutrition knowledge to all aspects of health,” she said.
Ms Bush, who completed senior at Chanel College in Gladstone, began studying at a Brisbane university before transferring to USC at Sippy Downs on the Sunshine Coast.
“I found that I didn’t like living in the city and USC sounded perfect for my needs,” she said.
“As the classes were small, I really enjoyed getting to know everyone in the cohort and I found the lecturing staff very helpful and encouraging.”
— Clare McKay