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     SAM KORBAN

“Your point of difference might be that you’re always available.”

I am a finance broker.

In high school, like most people, I had no idea what I wanted to do. Finance was the furthest thing from my mind. I graduated with marks that weren’t lousy, but weren’t great, either. I did a legal studies course at RMIT, thinking it may be a pathway to a law degree.

That didn’t quite work out. I started doing temp jobs at various law firms. Basically, I was carrying folders and filing for barristers. It was boring. Continue reading

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      ROY ADAMS

“Wealth building happens outside of the 9-5”

I am a property investment coach.

I wasn’t a very good student in high school, mostly because I had a very difficult relationship with my parents: we didn’t get on at all. Home life was a constant struggle, which overflowed into my school life. I barely graduated.

After school, I went straight to the army for my compulsory military service. I didn’t like the army either. I mean, it’s not like I was expecting to get a nice ‘thank you’ – I realized I was doing my duty – but the commanders went out of their way to abuse and humiliate us, which cut too close to the bone, reminding me of home. Continue reading

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     TERRY BARNES

“And the more I looked at it, the more I saw: yes, it is a winner! It’s genius!”

I run a RAMS Home Loans franchise.

In year 12, I had two different music teachers: one of them was horrendous and one was really good. So I decided there should be more good music teachers in the world, and I would become one of them. I liked music enough, and didn’t know what else to do with my life, so that seemed like a good idea.

I did a year and a half of a primary school teaching course, which ended up being a disaster. Whilst I was OK at the academic part of it, I found out during the practical components that I was no good with kids! After failing the teaching round, I left and joined my dad’s business, installing electronics like security systems, antennas and home theatre systems. Continue reading

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All photos provided by Rochelle Lindsay

     ROCHELLE LINDSAY

“ED would be a bloodbath night after night.”

I’m a registered nurse working with aboriginal peoples in remote Australia.

When I had to fill in my university application, I wasn’t completely sure what I was going to do. I put down for both nursing and for a Bachelor of Arts. I was accepted to Griffith University Gold Coast for nursing and started uni in 1997. I have not looked back since.

I loved uni and did quite well. I chose to do my grad year at Longreach as both my grandparents lived in rural areas. I quite liked the idea of doing a rural placement. Little did I know that 17 years later I would still be out bush (despite promising my best friend to be back in a year!) Continue reading

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     SHIKHA MONDAL

“From my heart, I care for the patients; I feel a deep need to help them.”

I work as a registered nurse at Epworth Hospital in Melbourne.

When I finished year twelve in Bangladesh, my family insisted that I go into nursing. It wasn’t my first choice at all. I wanted to be a university lecturer, an academic. In my country, if you’re a good student, you study engineering, or medicine. Usually nursing is for those who are not the best students, or students from poor socio-economic background in Bangladesh.

But my parents sent me to study nursing because they thought that as a nurse, I’d be guaranteed at least a government job, and so I’d always be able to work and survive. I applied for the biggest medical college in Bangladesh. I sat my entrance exam very successfully, and got a chance to study nursing with scholarship. Continue reading

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     EDGAR TAN

“Sometimes you are the only person with them in their dying moments.”

I am a registered nurse specializing in aged care.

I was always interested in nursing and all things medical, so straight after high school I went to do a nursing course at the Institute of Technical Education of Singapore. Coming from an Asian background where nursing as a career can be frowned upon, especially for males, I was lucky to have a pretty supportive family.

I did a two-year certificate to become an enrolled nurse. Thereafter, I did around four months work in a public hospital before it was time for me to do the mandatory two year military service. Continue reading

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      REBECCA LANIGAN

“I think as nurses, often we focus primarily on our jobs and patients, but it’s also important to spend time on ourselves, our self-development and career satisfaction.”

I am a Registered Nurse, working in a Level 1 Emergency and Trauma centre in Melbourne.

Prior to doing my VCE in Mildura, I went on a cultural exchange trip to Indonesia. I lived with a host family in Yogyakarta, going to school and sharing their lifestyle. The second time I visited, I actually ended up being a patient in their healthcare system. That was the first time I was in a hospital – home or overseas.

When comparing the lifestyle I experienced there to my own, I was especially struck by the difference in healthcare – not just the resources, but even in the basic access people have to knowledge and health education. Continue reading

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     MARK TYRRELL

“Trying to get a Holocaust survivor with dementia into a shower is a harrowing experience”

I currently work as a practice nurse in a GP Clinic.

I was never too interested in school, and left half way through year 12. I already knew I wanted to do nursing, as I had been a first aid volunteer a few years by then. I started through a Victorian Youth Development program in 1997, that allowed kids to do cadetships with the army, the navy – and first aid.

I learnt first aid basics, went out with the ambos to events like football and concerts. It was pretty confronting for a kid, dealing with cardiac arrests, drug overdoses. But seeing how the paramedics and the nurses I worked with dealt with these situations and people, inspired me to get into it myself. Continue reading

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     MAEVE BLAKE

“In ICU, you don’t get the luxury of feeling tired, running on autopilot.”

I’m a Division 1 nurse working at the Intensive Care Unit at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

Although my mum was a nurse, it was never something I was interested in doing when I was young. After school, I got into hospitality, working in bars and restaurants. Having a dual Irish passport, I travelled to Ireland and lived there a few years, doing odd jobs – but mainly hospitality.

It was a lot of fun for a while, but eventually, I looked around me and thought ‘Do I really want to be a fifty-year old waitress, working nights and weekends? This is going to get old real quick’. So I came back to Australia. Continue reading

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     RIYAD ALADASSI

“The worst thing was the ugly feeling of impotence. When you can’t save a life.”

I am an anaesthetic and recovery nurse at Epworth Private Hospital.

Born in Kuwait, I am a third generation Palestinian refugee. We came to Gaza when my father had an accident which left him a quadriplegic. So from early childhood, I became used to performing nursing tasks, looking after my dad. My dream then was to become a neurosurgeon and operate on my dad to heal him.

After school, I started seeking medical scholarships abroad, as there weren’t any  medical schools in Gaza. But my father expressed a desire that I stay by his side, and I obeyed, letting my dream go. Instead, I went to an American Baptist missionary school in Gaza to study nursing. Continue reading