Charles Sturt University graduate Ms Lauren Lieschke has remained in the regional area she grew up and studied in to pursue her career and contribute to improving the regional healthcare system as a radiation therapist.
Ms Lauren Lieschke grew up in a small country town and knows the importance of access to skilled medical and allied health professionals.
Born in Wodonga, Victoria, Ms Lieschke grew up in Walbundrie, NSW and completed her Higher School Certificate at Billabong High School in Culcairn.
She moved to Thurgoona when she commenced a Bachelor of Medical Radiation Science (with specialisations) at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga.
There were many long days of travel to attend classes or watching recordings online at home when attending class in-person was not an option.
Ms Lieschke said it was ‘hard to believe’ the time has finally come to graduate, despite the December ceremony being rescheduled due to COVID-19.
She is one of more than 3,200 students conferred on Friday 3 December and one of more than 8,700 students to graduate from Charles Sturt in 2021.
Ms Lieschke said she and her fellow graduates deserve to be proud and celebrate the occasion.
“Despite the difficulties of COVID-19, it is still a significant life and professional milestone,” she said.
“It’s the final stepping stone in our journey.”
Ms Lieschke is graduating with a specialisation in Radiation Therapy, a career path that came about due to an enlightening placement with a radiation therapy department in Sydney.
She was drawn to the diverse career options, developing clinical knowledge and technologies and teamwork involved in radiation therapy
“If I am being completely honest, I didn’t know radiation therapy existed before attending a two-week placement in my first year of study,” she said.
“Within this time, something clicked inside of me and I had to know and learn more about radiation therapy.”
Ms Lieschke said her final year of clinical placement in Albury has opened her eyes to how significant and valuable it is to have access to a cancer care centre in a regional area.
She wants to be an advocate for radiation therapy and treatment of cancer in regional areas, such as Albury-Wodonga and the Riverina.
“I hope to prosper within regional healthcare and bring enthusiasm into being a radiation therapist … because everyone deserves the very best care when going through challenges associated with cancer treatment,” she said.
Ms Lieschke is currently working as a casual at a dress shop and as a harvester until she starts her full-time position as a radiation therapist at Genesis Care Albury in the Cancer Centre.
Her desire to make a difference to the regional healthcare system is what inspired her to remain in the area she has lived and studied in all her life.