Dr Julie Rudner
Lecturer for La Trobe’s Community Planning and Development Program
Dr Julie Rudner joined the Community Planning and Development Program at the start of 2010, and has since proven to be an invaluable member of staff at La Trobe’s Bendigo campus. She has energised the program through her commitment and enthusiasm, taking on a workload that far exceeds university requirements.
The Community Planning and Development Program looks at towns, cities and rural areas in terms of their social, economic and physical environments, with the aim of improving them as places to live.
The program encourages students to grow personally, socially, academically and professionally through the challenges, camaraderie and practice-based opportunities it offers.
This practice-based approach involves using current council projects as the subjects for students’ assessment, and providing their analysis to councils. Julie explains that while there is a theoretical foundation for the program, the aim is to connect student work with real-life issues.
Julie is particularly valued by international students for providing them with many hours of one-on-one assistance. She realises that university can be particularly challenging for international students, who are learning new styles of studying while improving their language skills and adjusting to a new culture. To address these issues, Julie ensures she understands each student’s academic strengths and weaknesses, and encourages them to be involved in the university community.
Julie believes that the university experience should not be reduced to meeting assignment deadlines, and aims to give her students opportunities to discover and realise their talents.