Thomas Chadwick (2015 intake)
Degree: Master of Urban Planning, Curtin University
I am motivated to do work that empowers other people and contributes to the community, so working for Housing to create affordable housing opportunities for those who would otherwise struggle to rent or own their own home seemed like a perfect fit.
When I finished university I didn’t know exactly what type of work interested me, so I was attracted to the graduate program because it would enable me to gain experience in a wide range of work areas and explore my professional interests. So far I’ve worked in Asset Planning, where I researched how upcoming changes in local planning schemes will affect the Authority’s properties; Housing Programs, where I reviewed internal program policies; Workforce Development, which saw me assisting with the development of a Capability Framework that will help guide the development of Housing’s workforce into the future; and Aboriginal Housing, where I worked to improve the delivery of our Employment Related Accommodation program. I am currently working in the Complex Projects team, assisting with the development of some of Housing’s large-scale projects.
One of the most enjoyable things about the program has been meeting people from across the whole organisation. I have built relationships with people with a wide range of skills and personalities, and I often pick up the phone to ask for advice or assistance from someone I met on a previous rotation. This not only makes work a fun and exciting but it also helps me learn and develop both personally and professionally.
Name: Zara Wakely (2014)
Degree: Bachelor Regional and Urban Planning (Environment Minor) University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland
Year Joined: 2014
I have always gravitated towards policy and housing affordability challenges. I was able to explore my interest extensively during my university studies and completed my major research project titled ‘Smart growth and housing affordability: a comparative case study of Brisbane, Australian and Auckland, New Zealand’. I was awarded the Queensland Minister’s Town Planning Prize for my research project at which point I decided to focus on housing affordability and looked for new career opportunities. Applying for Housing’s Graduate Program was a big leap of faith for me, I stepped away from town planning, and our family home and packed my family into our car and drove 6,000 kilometres in the search of a new learning opportunity with the Housing Authority.
I undertook placements in Market Innovation and Partnerships, Housing Programs, Policy and Practice, Land and Housing Construction, Town Planning and Urban Design, Intergovernmental outcomes. In terms of key projects, I contributed to the land and housing development framework, Western Australian State Government strata title reforms, Kimberley Employment and Enterprise Program.
The professional development opportunities made available under the Graduate Program, particularly the mentor program and leadership courses. I can’t emphasise enough how fortunate graduates are to be exposed to this amount of professional development, its unrivalled compared to my experience in the private sector and local government.
I have secured a role within the Market Innovation and Partnerships team in Strategy and Policy and am working on an exciting range of projects including, seniors housing strategy, strategic framework for transitional housing, various initiatives under the Social Housing Investment Package and the National Rental Affordability Scheme.