How long have you worked at UOW?
I have worked at UOW for nearly 12 years. I came here after 14 years in the NSW public sector, and 6 years working as a solicitor in private practice. I live in Gerringong and I feel very fortunate to have a great job and to live in a great community only 40 minutes away.
What’s your/your team’s role at the University?
Academic Quality and Standards is a team of policy, governance, review and quality specialists who work to ensure the University meets the expectations of students, the Community and the national regulator, TEQSA, in delivering high quality courses. We have 16 dedicated staff.
What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
UOW has a strong reputation for quality learning and teaching, and I am proud of the way we are able to showcase this to our national regulator, TEQSA and secure re-registration along with several commendations. I am also proud of our team’s ability to work with Faculties on challenging but highly worthwhile projects to make quality improvement easier.
It’s also rewarding to see my Unit embracing new technology to improve how we work. We have taken to Tableau for the Data for Quality Assurance project, and to the Business Process Management System in moving academic misconduct and academic complaints online. We are now rolling out the COSMOS curriculum management system.
What’s the most challenging?
Managing change is the most challenging aspect of our work. We ask a lot of academic staff, and we spend a lot of time and effort working out how to make change as positive and productive as possible. Our work rarely involves reinforcing the status quo.
Proudest work achievement at UOW?
My team has won two OCTAL awards in the past two years, and it’s fantastic to see staff get recognition for wonderful, collaborative projects that have made a real difference to how we do things in academic integrity and in how we access data to support quality improvement.
What goals are you/your team working towards in 2019?
- We are very focussed on the next stages of development of the COSMOS system, which should result in a COSMOS-based course handbook being produced for the first time in late 2019.
- We also hope to make progress in moving to online subject and teacher evaluation surveys.
- Finally, we are working to finalise a set of Course Portfolio Principles for the University. These are designed to guide the size and shape of our course offer into the future.
What’s your fondest memory so far of working at UOW?
My unit ran UOW graduation ceremonies for many years and this was an incredibly stressful, but ultimately a very rewarding experience. To witness the joy that graduation brings to students and their families, to hear great speakers and to listen to talented student musicians. All done with a very personal and thoughtful touch that is the UOW Way.
Random fact about you or hidden talent?
I often say I have ‘the curse of credibility’. People give my advice far more credence than it deserves. For example, my sister is a GP, but my father only took medical advice from me, It’s all an act. I don’t know much about anything really.
What’s your favourite place in the world and why?
I read a travel piece some years ago about Chilean Patagonia – Torres Del Paine National Park – that completely won me over. So I went there in 2015 to go trekking in the park, and it is the most beautiful place I have ever visited. The mountains, glaciers, icebergs, completely unique fauna, a wild climate, it was amazing. I’d go back tomorrow.
Something on your bucket list you’d care to share?
Besides writing the Great Australian Novel, and having been pretty fortunate to travel frequently overseas, top of my bucket list is to go west, visit the Coral Coast and the Kimberley in Western Australia. It looks amazing and boasts incredible first peoples’ cultural heritage.