Real life: A student reflection

Sophie Peters1, Kristie-Lee Evans2, Maeva Hall3

1Edith Cowan University 4th Year Occupational Therapy student
2Edith Cowan University, 4th Year Occupational Therapy student
3Western Australian Centre for Rural Health. PO 109 Geraldton WA  6531,

The Western Australian Centre for Rural Health (WACRH) is a University Department of Rural Health with a focus on education and research to meet workforce needs now and in the future.  We are located in Geraldton, WA with services across the Midwest and Pilbara. Providing non-traditional rural placement opportunity is one of our many strategies across what we call the Rural Health Pipeline. This presentation, as just one option within our student placement program, will provide a student reflection on their time and specific experience across regional, remote and island remote work within 7 weeks!

The presentation will cover aspects of;

  • Preparation and understanding of cultural perspectives including Indigenous, Malay and Chinese on their practice.
  • Flexibility and innovation
  • Being prepared for everything!
  • Working within a interprofessional practice model
  • The diversity of rural practice
  • Cultural understanding in practice
  • Service delivery and how this can change
  • Key lessons learned from a clinical and practice context
  • Collaborations with partner organisations for the islands section of the placement to be achieved

This presentation will include stories directly from the students involved as they reflect on the differences and learnings across Geraldton, Mt Magnet and Christmas/Cocos Keeling Islands.


Maeva Hall OT with over 30 years rural experience in public, private and tertiary sectors. Currently the Deputy Director of WACRH and lead of the Education Team with a focus on building health literacy, attracting people to health careers, providing high quality placement opportunities and supporting the clinicians in their rural activity and extension around evaluation, research and higher education as determined.

Sophie Peters 4th Year OT student on a rural placement with WACRH between 2 May and 18 June 2016.

Kristie-Lee Evans 4th Year OT student on a rural placement with WACRH between 2 May and 18 June 2016.