When I ask families why they chose Strathcona, usually they tell me something about the ‘’feel’’ of the place. This is then often closely followed by a comment about the ‘’warmth’’ of the Strathy community. These two intangibles have long been a huge part of what makes our school so special. We are built on a rich history of generations of generous, intelligent and humble people who share a set of common values. There’s a certain understatedness about the Strathcona community, but don’t be fooled by it – it’s most certainly intentional.
Combining her professional experience in communications and her passion for refugee and humanitarian issues, Cassie Cohen(’12)’s career journey to date has been a fascinating one. From volunteering and interning at the Australian Embassy in Kathmandu, to participating in Bounding Plains to Share – a multicultural storytelling adventure project to raise money for ASRC, (Asylum Seeker Research Centre) -, Cassie’s endeavours have been remarkable. Read more about Cassie’s story below.
Jennifer Biggin (’84) studied teaching in Mathematics and Computing and after a few years decided to focus on computer science and changed to a Science Degree at The University of Melbourne. Jennifer discusses how Strathcona taught her that she can do anything she puts her mind to and although STEM is a highly male dominated field, it didn’t bother her.
Dr Monique Fernandez (’13) graduated in 2021 with a Doctor of Medicine at The University of Melbourne and has since been working as a Doctor at the Austin Hospital. Monique shares her personal experience about being a woman working in the STEM field, where she is still witness to gender stereotypes around the role of a Doctor being a male dominated career path. However, Monique uses this as an opportunity for education and discusses how it is becoming increasingly prevalent to see women in STEM careers and how these old traditions are being challenged.
Dr Kathleen McInnes (’79) leads the Climate Extremes and Projections group in the Climate Science Centre in CSIRO’s Ocean and Atmosphere business unit. Her work deals with how climate change will affect severe weather and coastal extreme sea levels in Australia and the Pacific. Her work assists local government to manage and adapt to climate change. She was a lead author on the IPCC Special Report on Oceans and Cryosphere in 2019. She currently serves as a co-chair of the World Climate Research Program Grand Challenge on Regional Sea Level Changes and Coastal Impacts. Read below for the full interview with Kathleen.
Dr Lynda Chambers has a career spanning over 30 years in the science field. She has been involved in developing seasonal rainfall forecast systems for the Bureau of Meteorology, assessed the effectiveness of a cloud seeding project for one of Melbourne’s water catchments with the CSIRO and has completed her PhD in Zoology plus many more exceptional achievements. Lynda shares advice to students interested in a career in a STEM field and some of the challenges women face pursuing work in her industry. Read on to learn more about Lynda’s career.