Jess is currently completing her final year at medical school at Monash University after deciding to pursue a career in medicine after seeing the incredible work two of her local GPs (Dr Michael Moynihan and Dr Ernan Hession) made towards their community. She has been privileged to undertake her clinical placements in Monash’s Rural Clinical School – Mildura, Swan Hill and Bendigo, and under her JFPP mentor Sally Singleton in Broome. Jess has been chosen to represent his peers as an Ambassador at this year’s Rural Medicine Australia 2019 conference (RMA19).

Tell us a bit about yourself and your career/ work experience up to now.
I grew up in Nyah, Victoria in the Mallee-Murray region and was lucky enough to travel around Australia for a year with my family when I was younger, which cemented my love and passion for rural and regional Australia. I’m currently in my final year of medicine at Monash University (extended rural cohort) and very excited about the next step of my journey.

What made you want to pursue a career in rural medicine?
A lot drew me towards pursuing rural medicine as a career… I love the diversity, the idea of fulfilling an area of need, the lifestyle, the terrain and the diversity of the climate and environment (from mountains to mallee, trees, forests, lake and coastal environments), the friendly and welcoming communities, better learning and opportunities on the job and of course, the lack of city traffic to name a few…

Why did you choose ACRRM?
I chose ACRRM for their commitment to rural and remote medicine and the strong advocacy they provide for doctors who serve those communities. It all appealed to me and my desire to contribute and serve rural communities. I think ACRRM’s education program and their member support is among the best in the world!

What are some things you might normally do in your day-to-day at work/in a week? Currently as a student a typical day would be waking up and doing a run along the Murray/Lake Weroona to get prepared for the day. I’d then go through rounds, head into a clinic or into theatre and do some tutorials. My day usually ends with doing some sort of sports training like netball, umpiring or lifeguarding and then catching up with friends if I can.

What has been one of your career highlights so far?
Some highlights so far include growing up and being inspired by Dr Michael Moynihan as my local GP, undertaking my clinical placements in Mildura, Swan Hill and Bendigo – with my fantastic peers in Monash rural clinical school, completing the John Flynn Placement Program (JFPP) in Broome and Bidyadanga in Western Australia and attending rural doctor conferences such as RMA and RDAV!

Do you have a dream place you’d like to work as a rural or remote GP?
At the moment my dream location would either be Swan Hill in Victoria or Broome, Western Australia.  

What are you most looking forward to at RMA19?
Definitely both the student presentations in the dedicated student stream/room and the Gala Dinner and Awards night.

Do you have any advice for those who might be attending their first conference? Embrace the opportunity! It’s a fantastic conference and make as many friends and peers as possible.