12 Apr 2017
Jo-Liz Prosser has been a registered nurse for almost 20 years, and is the Head of Nursing at TAFE Queensland East Coast and leads the accreditation process with The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Accreditation Council (ANMAC) for her TAFE region.
At TAFE, Jo-Liz leads the design, development and delivery of the Diploma of Nursing and fosters effective partnerships with Universities, hospitals and health facilities. She consults closely with stakeholders to not only deliver bespoke hands-on clinical training, but also provide students with invaluable hospital placements and successful pathways to employment.
In 2017, Jo-Liz is leading the delivery of the Diploma of Nursing in the new Sunshine Coast Health Institute (SCHI) located in the Sunshine Coast Health Precinct. SCHI is one of the largest joint ventures of its kind on the Sunshine Coast – a partnership between Queensland Health, University of the Sunshine Coast (USC), TAFE Queensland and a medical school.
Jo-Liz reflects on her journey into nursing and teaching, and what both mean to her.
This is her story:
After finishing school I had two real passions – nursing and teaching – and wanted to somehow explore both careers. Fortunately, looking back, I’ve been able to pursue both of my passions and am now living the best of both worlds.
I developed an interest in caring for people at an early age. Growing up my father was quite unwell and I spent a lot of time with him in hospital. I wanted to become a nurse so I could better understand the disease process and how the body works. I wanted to get a better understanding of how, as a daughter, I could best help my dad through his recovery and possibly prevent further illness.
As a nurse I grew into becoming a lead clinician and was responsible for training new staff and leading portfolios within nursing. My employers encouraged me to complete my Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and within a few short months I was teaching at TAFE. I now lead the Nursing Program and am responsible for assisting students across five campuses throughout the region to follow their dreams and obtain employment in nursing.
The best thing about teaching is watching students grow and evolve as professionals; watching them develop from ‘Semester One Newbies’, wearing that all too familiar ‘deer caught in headlights’ expression on their faces, to when they finish in Semester Three and have transformed into competent inspiring nurses about to go out and practice in the area that they love – nursing.
Away from work I love netball and travel. I’ve coached my daughter’s netball team for the last 9 years – somehow they’re not sick of me yet – and when I’m not visiting my brother who lives in Singapore I’m at the beach, exploring new restaurants or spending quality time with my two Spoodle dogs… oh, and of course my family. But at the end of the day I love being both a nurse and an educator, it’s who I am.
I’ve had a few mentors throughout my journey including Kylie Wydell, Lisa Molloy and Helen Leeson, but I’m also incredibly fortunate to be working with some amazing colleagues at TAFE. We’re a great team and it’s a pleasure to go to work every day. Every new project has its own set of challenges and, as a team, we always seem to overcome them and make great happen for our students – student success is the best reward.
Nursing is perfect for those looking to make a difference in someone else’s life. Nursing is a career and a lifestyle; you live what you work – we’re always on. There will always be a need for nurses. People who are confident, capable and caring are highly sought after.
Become one of the 1.3million Australians making a valuable difference in people’s lives every day and find out how a career in nursing could give you the ultimate in job satisfaction.