Here are your nominees for the Alumni Council from the Faculty of Business and Economics and Melbourne Business School.
Mr Sean Armistead - BCom (2010)
I have been a committed alumnus of the University of Melbourne. Over the past decade since graduation from the University, I have been a leader within Melbourne's Indigenous community, responsible for employing more than 500 Indigenous people, received the Victorian Aboriginal Education Association – Wurreker Award for Koori Professional of the year in 2016. In addition to my executive experience in managing national programs for Australia’s leading corporates, I have cofounded both Not for Profit and commercial entities as an Indigenous entrepreneur.
Current Chair of Ganbina (a school to work transition program for disadvantaged youth) and Board member of Kinaway Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce, I have an exceptionally broad network spanning corporate, political and Indigenous communities across Australia.
I have continued to be involved with the University since graduation donating financially and maintaining a connection through Murrup Barak and as a participant in the Commerce faculty's mentoring program and the Welcome to Melbourne program. As a university student I was the first Indigenous Office Bearer at UMSU, leading Indigenous student community awareness on campus.
As an Alumni Council member I will focus on bringing alumnus together and creating value through opportunities and networking.
Ms Ying Chen - BCom (2013)
I am Ying Chen, a social entrepreneur who is building a philanthropy network with a strong mission to create social impact. I was born in China, worked in Australia, and now live in the US. I am passionate about making positive changed in people's lives.
As a life member of China Global Philanthropy Institute, which was founded by five Chinese and US philanthropists: Bill Gates, Ray Dalio, Niu Gensheng, He Qaioyu and Ye Qingjun, I can assist with alumni outreach in both China and the US.
My team and I are committed to create a networking platform to promote the international cooperation and relationship between Chinese social entrepreneurs and those of other countries. We have connections with top tier philanthropists in China and we have been working with some of the leading philanthropy institutions in the US.
I volunteered at many organisations and programs, including the Chinese Students and Scholars Association. Salvation Army, and Career Mentoring Program of University of Melbourne. This year I would like to volunteer at the Alumni Council, because the University of Melbourne is a world leader in education, research excellence and social impact. There is huge potential for our social entrepreneurs to collaborate with the University. Together we can change the world.
Mr Ivan Chua - BCom (2015)
I have a strong track record of engaging university students, staff and alumni. As CEO of Vascular Access Robotics, I lead a multidisciplinary team of six senior scientists from the Australian Centre for Field Robotics and Charles Perkins Centre in the development of the world's first medical device which enables first-pass intravenous cannulation - currently patent pending in 54 countries. At the university, I have delivered guest lectures and taught technology innovation and healthcare to more than 1,600 students in the business school (Executive MBA and Bachelor of Commerce) and the Faculty of Engineering and IT (Master of IT and Master of IT Management). Most notably, I established the Centre for Artificial Intelligence Development, the nation's first student-run think tank in AI which focusses on building Australia's talent and capacity in artificial intelligence to enhance the nation's global competitiveness in AI.
I believe in the power of technology to address the toughest challenges in our society, and leadership is required to drive change on a global scale. The University of Melbourne has an important role in identifying, developing and mobilising the next generation of leaders in Australia to drive the development of new solutions to address global challenges today and tomorrow.
I am passionate about helping students and graduates to achieve impact for themselves and the society, and a role within the Alumni Council would provide me with an opportunity to continue to pursue my vision of building Australia's next generation of leaders. As a CEO, engineer and teacher, I believe I have the right skills and experience to prepare students and alumni for a future of AI. If elected, I pledge to commit myself to lead others to execute the University's Believe Campaign target of raising $1 billion and engaging 100,000 alumni by 2021, and to create strong outcomes for the students, alumni and the society.
Ms Alison Currie - BCom(Hons) (2003), BA (2004)
Following completion my studies at the University and a short while in the Economics department as a research assistant and tutor, I have spent the last fifteen years in and around Governments.
After a short time in the public service, I moved into the political sphere, and have worked as a senior adviser to Ministers, Treasurers and Premiers in both State and Federal Governments. I am currently the Chief of Staff to the Victorian State Treasurer and Minister for Resources.
I have decided to step away from Government at the end of this term, following the state election this November. I am keen to find a new way to contribute to our community. In the past, I have served on the board of the University's Credit Union, the YWCA and volunteered for many years on a soup van for homeless people. I believe the potential for the alumni collectively to support each other in our endeavours, and thus better serve our community, is enormous. The advocacy skills I have developed, intimate knowledge of Government, and relationships I have built I believe will allow me to serve the alumni of the University well.
Mr James Han - BCom (2015)
I am the Business Development Manager at Motion Property, a real estate and investment company, based in Melbourne.
I was active member in Melbourne University student clubs including Chinese Culture Society, Chinese debating club, Chinese Publishing Group. Since graduation, I’ve been voluntarily promoting Melbourne University and sharing Melbourne University experience with the local and overseas Chinese community.
I have been awarded several national real estate business awards including Finalist, Rising Star of the Year 2018, Finalist, and Business Development Manager of the Year 2018. I also provide consultancy to overseas Asian Developers entering Australian Market.
Mr Kevin Han - BCom (2012)
Having been involved as an FBE Mentor through the Career Mentoring Program over the past two years, and having worked as a Department of Finance tutor for Melbourne University in 2012, I have always taken a keen interest in the ongoing learning and development of students, in particular as they looked to enter the workforce. Given this background, I believe I can make a positive contribution to the alumni council and to the broader alumni community.
In my professional career, I have worked across a spectrum of fields, as well as a range of employers. Having worked at Ernst and Young, a global professional services firm in their Infrastructure Advisory team, through to a boutique private equity and M&A firm, I feel I can provide a unique perspective to alumni and assist in furthering the engagement and involvement of the alumni network.
I am confident my experience in infrastructure, financial services and private equity would add a fresh perspective to complement the existing diverse backgrounds of the council members.
Over the next two years, I hope to contribute to alumni events, facilitate increased connectivity between the university and alumni, and represent the alumni community to the best of my ability.
Mr David Masters - BSc (1978), MAppCom (2007)
I bring to the Alumni knowledge and capabilities having worked as a program manager (IBM and Accenture), consultant and director (ICF International and Strat2Exec), and senior executive Open Universities Australia (OUA). These roles gave me experience across multiple industries including aviation, finance, energy, government, agriculture and education; experience which I believe will prove valuable in reaching out to the alumni community. In several roles I have worked in UK, South Korea and Singapore. As senior executive at OUA, I not only successfully grew this online higher education business but developed insights into the sector from both an industry and student perspective. Through my own consulting company, I have continued to engage and research the higher education sector and understand the challenges the sector and more specifically the University faces. I therefore believe I offer a unique set of experience and skills that understand the challenges the sector and more specifically the University faces and how a strong and vibrant alumni community that can provide advocacy, resources, strengthening ties between the University and industry and giving back in a voluntary capacity. The latter which I have undertaken mentoring to postgraduate students from both the Finance and Business and Science faculties.
Mr Keir Paterson - BA(Hons)(1994), MBA (2009)
Accessibility, Equity, Sustainability.
I’ve been a full time undergrad, a part-time post-grad, an 18-year-old first year and a mature student, all at Melbourne Uni.
I know what it’s like to be a young graduate looking for work, and a mature student juggling work, part-time study and a young family.
As a principle and client director at Mercer I advise some of Australia’s largest corporates and I speak at Melbourne Business School and elsewhere on the future of work. I turn my passion for active transport, health and sustainability into action as Director and Vice President of Bicycle Network, the peak body for recreational and commuter cyclists.
I’m also a parent of teenaged kids, concerned about their future and how their education will support them in an uncertain world.
These different perspectives will help me represent all alumni on the Council, and if elected I’ll progress three key themes: greater equity, increased accessibility and sustainability.
Mr Charles Pitt - BCom (2007)
Studying my undergrad at Melbourne University was truly a defining moment in my life, it was the springboard to everything achieved to date. For this reason I am committed to the University and what it stands for – growing in the esteem of future generations.
Recently living and working overseas in various locations I was fortunate enough to attend some of the Melbourne University alumni events in London. Through this I was able to learn the importance of ensuring the alumni conversation continues. Interestingly, speaking to other alumni at such an event, there is instant affinity having both been to Melbourne. Providing a voice and enhancing the alumni experience while representing the interests of the university community as a whole will be my key focus.
Ms Danielle Smith - BCom (2013)
During my time at University I held acting roles in multiple clubs, including Activities Member for Science Students’ Society and later Treasurer in SSS, and multiple smaller clubs which built a connection with Melbourne University much deeper than just from my love of learning.
Since leaving University I have held professional roles in local and global operations, most recently looking after allowance accounting for ASEAN business units. Throughout my career, I have continued my passion for engagement which led to departmental social club focused on Workplace of Choice and engagement as well as mentoring programs focussed on Women in Business. I have also worked overseas for extended periods of time whilst still trying to maintain my connection to Australia.
I hope to use these experiences to strengthen the alumni relationship to further provide inside, engagement and mentorship into the student-body with a focus on relevant clubs and societies.
As well as fostering alumni/student relationships, I see value in open and honest communication, awareness of further short and long-term education available to graduates and creating a network to support mental, social and intellectual health.
I have a lot of pride for Melbourne University and would be honoured to serve as a representative. Thank you for your consideration.
Mr Boston Szephora - BCom (2014)
I remain an engaged alumnus and passionate supporter of the University in a range of forums. I believe my participation as an Alumni Council member will provide a raison d'être to further represent the interests of the University and alumni globally.
I believe my knowledge, skills and experience will add value to the Alumni Council. In particular, I look forward to contributing my:
- Deep understanding of the University of Melbourne and its stakeholders. As a graduate of the University and former staff member of MAP, I have worked closely with Deans, other leaders, staff, students and alumni across the University. I continue to strengthen this network which provides me with a connected understanding of the needs of a range of Alumni Council stakeholders.
- Experience fostering global ecosystems. During and post my employment at MAP, I have fostered an inclusive and participatory entrepreneurial ecosystem and continue to work closely with Governments, Industries, Universities, Investors and Founders to build a vibrant community and promote our best and brightest. I continue to work with the Alumni Relations team to foster global connections and activities for the University.
- Cross-cultural engagement and convening power. Professionally, I work directly with a senior and influential Board Chair, which has led me to develop an extensive international network of business and government leaders, politicians and researchers across Australia, the United States and Asia Pacific. I regularly host dignitaries to promote trade and investment opportunities. As a result, I will bring significant convening power to the role where this helps to advance the Alumni Council agenda.
Dr Jessie Wong - BCom(Hons) (2000)
I have a long track record of representing the interests of the University and its alumni. Most notably, I have served six years (2013-2018) on the University’s Faculty of Business and Economics Alumni Council. I also established the University’s Alumni Association (Beijing) in 2014. As President, I led the Association to grow to 12-member strong and to significantly expand the alumni community in Beijing who are connected and engaged with the University. Having spent my professional career of over 15 years in four major cities internationally, I have a keen understanding of different environments and therefore the different needs of the University’s global student and alumni communities.
I am passionate about the University and its brand. I believe the Alumni Council is a grass root mechanism by which to continue to achieve the University’s vision and goals. I strongly believe that the Council’s functions and roles speak to the very heart of the University – its students and alumni – which is core to the University’s strategies and goals.
I believe I possess the relevant skills and experience to contribute to the Council achieving its mission. If elected, I pledge to use my skills and experience to advance the Council’s goals, and focusing relentlessly on enriching the student experience, and advocating for alumni around the world.