Our visiting students get to know their communities


Volunteering, attending trivia nights and social events are great ways to get to know your new communities, according to two aspiring dietitians who have just spent five weeks gaining clinical experience in Mount Isa and remote communities.

Both nutrition and dietetic students from the University of Sunshine Coast, Sarah and Jessica said their clinical and community experiences helped shape future career choices and pushed them out of their comfort zone.

“Getting involved in community activities is a great way to make friends and lifelong experiences, and, as well, I learnt much by participating in existing community organisations,” Sarah said.

“Being pushed out of my comfort zone created growth in learning and skill development.”

Jessica agreed: “Say yes to everything that is offered to you and really get to know the community, there are so many ways in which you can do so. Be open-minded and just listen to what the community has to say because the knowledge they hold is invaluable.

“I enjoyed learning from community elders and seeing how I can make a small difference in peoples’ lives.” 

One task included providing nutritional advice to the Mama's and Papa's group, which meets regularly at the North West Community Rehabilitation in Mount Isa (see picture).

Jessica grew up in Thallon in South-West Queensland and said she felt right at home in Mount Isa.

“It has reinforced my love and passion for living rural and remote and I will definitely be seeking a job in this area after graduating.

“Students I have spoken to have enjoyed their experience here and it is such a great way to shine a light on the opportunities you can get from working remote.”

Their placements were coordinated by the James Cook University Murtupuni Centre for Rural and Remote Health Centre, which delivers rural training experiences for medical, nursing, midwifery, dental and allied health students.

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