International alumni panel event (Issue 4, 2013)

International-Alumni-panelA panel of international alumni passed on their wisdom of experience from working in Australia recently at an event held at the Melbourne Campus.

Dr Joaquin Benedicto, an occupational therapist joined Charith Luwishewa, a financial accountant, and Shainie Jesurasan, a La Trobe University staff member to give advice and inspiration to about 25 current students at the Borchardt Library. Australian alumna Laura Bracken from the National Australia Bank also joined the panel.

International Student Services organised the event as part of The Essentials Series, an eleven-week program of interactive workshops, sessions and events to help international students enhance their university experience.

Dr Joaquin Benedicto said it was a fantastic opportunity to share what he had learned about entering the workforce in Australia.

He came to Australia from the Philippines with his wife and later decided to study a Master of Occupational Therapy Practice at La Trobe, graduating in 2009. He was one of two recipients of an Academic Excellence Scholarship in the same year.

He is currently the Manager of Women and Children's Health at Djerriwarrh Health Services.

‘I trained in the US, but all up I’ve worked as an occupational therapist for the past 17 years,’ Dr Benedicto said.

Other sessions in The Essentials Series included events repeated from Semester 1 Orientation earlier in the year plus getting involved in your local community, information on skilled migration, living on a budget and knowing your rights as a tenant in a rental property.

La Trobe University's Academic Excellence Scholarships target high achieving students from all countries who would like to study undergraduate or postgraduate coursework programs.