Appreciation for Australia Awards Fellowship

I may not be representative enough but at least I have the opportunity to express sincere gratitude and appreciation to the Australia Awards Facility – PNG for awarding me and eighteen other finest women in the public sector workforce with Australia Awards Fellowships to undertake short study in Australia.

The Australian Government through its Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade and the Australia Awards Facility – PNG recently farewelled us with expectations to complete eight (8) weeks of intensive study for a Graduate Certificate degree in Governance and Public Policy at the University of Queensland in Brisbane. Almost all of the women in this second cohort represent seven (7) main government departments including Community Development, Health, Treasury, Transport, PM & NEC, DHERST and National Planning & Monitoring. The women have been selected on merit coupled with experiences, skills and knowledge in the areas of governance and public policy. Since our arrival, we have settled in and study proper commenced on the 24th August 2015 and we are expected to complete the course by 16th October 2015.

For us, the course is necessary and conducive as it has been specifically tailored to meet our needs and requirements. In partnership with the University of Queensland, the course which essentially is 6 months long is been divided into two parts; the 7 weeks intensive study followed by a further 4 months of mentoring period which will take place in the different workplaces. The outcome of undertaking this course is to enhance our skills and knowledge capacities as well as preparing future and potential women leaders within the public sector workforce.

Our cohort is the second following the completion of the course by the first cohort in March to August 2015. This program is new and part of the Australian Government’s continued support and assistance to building capacities of Papua New Guineans by providing scholarships (long term) and fellowships (short term) to undertake studies in Australia as well as in-country training particularly in the health sector. As such we are expected to complete the course in March 2016.

I am the only representative from the Department of Community Development undertaking this study program and have come to appreciate the benefits gained so far since the commencement of the course in Port Moresby. As a middle manager, my goal is to complete this course and further implement my work plan on return (WPR) which has been developed for the purpose of this program. The WPR is done concurrently to the course but is not assessed. It is a tool we will use to incorporate the learning outcomes of the course. As such the WPR will be monitored throughout the implementation process in consultation with respective organizational heads and the course coordinators. This is an excellent opportunity and I wish all my fellow women a success in their endeavours.