Fiona Heathcote (2011)

Queen’s represents a very special world where you have wildly exciting adventures, meet beautifully diverse people, and live in an unconventional family environment supporting you through some tumultuous growing up years.

Spending my early uni years in the Queen’s environment provided such a supportive world for me, where I was lucky to meet many fantastic people throughout the Queen’s and Wyvern network. It was absolutely critical to survive some diabolical Calculus 2 exams, and more importantly inspired me to complete postgraduate studies that has given me opportunities to work in my passions of public health and sport. I have made amazing lifelong friends from Queen’s, and built a wider view of the world through the sport, arts, culture and leadership activities on offer.

One strong memory is of hanging off the walls singing my Fresher song during a turn with the rest of my year group, wearing a ridiculous costume, absorbing the sweat and joy of so many wild and different people united in a single experience together. I can still smell the sweet punch in the bar, feel the music buzzing through the air.

The voice and rights of women continue to build, slowly at times but then also in great leaps. Women in sport are becoming a more valued part of the landscape, with greater acknowledgment of their skill and impact on the community – especially in promoting participation and activity for girls during and after the teenage years. In my time, Queen’s had a wonderful culture for women of any ability to get involved in the many sporting events on offer. Being on the pitch/court/field and wearing the green, gold and poo brown was a very special feeling, and with the crowd that cheered from the sidelines, it felt like the whole College was on the team.

I am currently living in England with my partner and working in the Department for Culture, Media and Sport for the UK Government, managing sport financial policy. This is part of a short career/life break to live and travel overseas – I have taken leave from my permanent role in the Department of Health and Aged Care in the Australian Government where I helped establish the National Sports Tribunal.

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