Inspirational teachers in Physiotherapy, Podiatry, Prosthetics and Orthotics

Meet our innovative teachers in Physiotherapy, Podiatry, Prosthetics and Orthotics and find out how they are preparing future health professionals

Dr Daniel Bonnano

Dr Daniel Bonanno (pictured above), Senior Lecturer in Podiatry, says seeing his students graduate is one of the highlights of being a teacher.

Future podiatrists. Watching students gain skills and knowledge within a single class or across a semester is highly rewarding but graduation day is the real highlight for me. It marks the culmination of all the time and work that the students have put in throughout their studies and we get to see them celebrate their achievements with their proud friends, family, and teachers. It is a fantastic way to highlight the end of this special chapter in their life.

A strong foundation. I teach subjects that equip students with the essential skills and knowledge needed to be a podiatrist. In my classes, students will learn things like how to perform biomechanical assessments of the lower limb and foot, and develop management plans for a range of patient populations.

My career has allowed me to work in community health centres, orthopaedic departments in large hospitals, sports medicine clinics, and with several professional sports teams. This has allowed me to draw upon my clinical experiences in my teaching and really contextualise the course content for students.

Always learning. As a teacher I strive to create an environment that is safe for students to share their ideas, are respectful of one another and they have fun along the way. I also continually seek feedback from my students on what I’m doing well and what I can improve on - even as an educator we never stop learning!

Dr Renée Mackenzie

Dr Renée Mackenzie, Senior Lecturer in Prosthetics and Orthotics, wants to inspire her students to be effective, reflective communicators.

Communication is key. In the School of Allied Health, Human Services and Sport, I coordinate and teach the School-wide first year subject, Foundations of Professional Communication. I also lead the reflective practice and clinical communication pathways for Prosthetics and Orthotics.

A significant part of my teaching is equipping students with core interpersonal skills that are grounded in emotional intelligence and reflective practice. These skills support students to graduate as proactive, self-aware and professional clinicians.

Engaging students. I find that students are inspired when they feel engaged, safe to participate and can see that what they are learning has a clear purpose. My focus is to curate engagement, curiosity and value in learning.

Two-way learning. As a teacher, I have a responsibility to create a learning environment that motivates students to learn, which in turn motivates me to continually review and strengthen my teaching practice.

It’s a privilege to be part of the learning process. I enjoy journeying with students as they grapple with new, challenging and exciting concepts, and supporting them to take ownership of their learning and future profession.

Find out more about the Department of Physiotherapy, Podiatry, Prosthetics and Orthotics on the website and LinkedIn.