Carlie Smith | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Carlie Smith

Bachelor of Health Science (Applied Health Promotion)

Now employed as a Program Officer with the North Queensland Primary Health Network

For anyone interested in health, the Bachelor of Health Science provides a really diverse program with a range of options in which to major. I chose Health Promotion because I am particularly passionate about taking a holistic and preventative approach and improving the health outcomes of vulnerable populations.

As a mature-aged student, I wasn't sure what to expect, but USC provided a supportive and relaxed environment. I had some fantastic and inspiring teachers and made good friends.

In my final semester, I completed both a practical Public Health Project and a Student Work Placement. These courses were pivotal as they gave me the opportunity to develop real-life practical skills. They gave me the confidence to enter the industry as a graduate, and practical examples I could draw on in my search for employment. My placement supervisor at Queensland Health was amazing. I learned so much from her. She helped me prepare for interviews and provided me with a referee.

I have just completed my third week as a Program Officer at North Queensland Primary Health Network and, so far, no two days have been the same. I will be working across contract management and stakeholder engagement, as well as contributing to priority setting and strategic partnerships. In my second week I travelled to Dysart for the Rural Health Roundtables where we engage with the community and health providers about the region’s health needs, which informs our program planning for the future.

Highlights of my time at USC include receiving a scholarship to attend the Australian Health Promotion Association National Conference and being awarded the University Medal for Academic Excellence when I graduated. I was very proud of what I had achieved as a mature-aged student who really had no idea what to expect when I first began my study.