Health work is a family trait for new USC graduate

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Health work is a family trait for new USC graduate


Ashley Black with her parents Kasey and Mark Black at her USC graduation ceremony at the Sunshine Coast today

10 April 2019

With a nurse for a mother and paramedic for a father, Hervey Bay’s Ashley Black said she was destined to chase a career in the health industry.

The 21-year-old, who graduated today from USC with a Bachelor of Paramedic Science, said she had been eager to learn all she could about the role of an ambulance officer from an early age.

“My interest was sparked by my father, Mark Black, who has been a paramedic with the Queensland Ambulance Service for over 22 years,” Ashley said.

“When I was younger, Dad would let me look inside the ambulance and turn on the lights for me and, as I grew older, the novelty of being inside an ambulance never wore off,” she said.

“I enjoyed hearing about what my father did on his shifts and admired the comradery that he and his peers shared.”

The former Xavier Catholic College student said by the time she had finished high school she realised that she wanted to follow in his footsteps and enrolled to study Paramedic Science at USC’s Sunshine Coast campus.

The three-year program is delivered by experienced paramedics and provides students with clinical knowledge and skills, and hands-on experience through real-life simulations in specialised paramedic labs and clinical placements.

“I made amazing life-long friends at USC, the classes had a real sense of community and we all worked together to ensure we achieved the best possible outcomes,” Ashley said.

“One of the main things I have learned is that you can know every technique in the book and have all the knowledge in the world, but the most important skill in the workplace is good communication.

“Communication can change the way someone feels about an experience, and in this line of work you want to ensure people feel safe and comfortable in your care.”

Ashley is currently going through the selection process for the Graduate Paramedic Program with the Queensland Ambulance Service.

USC is staging 12 graduation ceremonies over three days this week at the Matthew Flinders College Performance Centre, Buderim, to celebrate the academic achievements of more than 1,800 graduating students.

Applications are open to study at USC, starting Semester 2.

— Clare McKay 

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