Classnotes - 2010s

After winning the Mathew Peck Travelling Scholarship and working in Tuvalu for six weeks, Alex Bongers (BPharm 2010, GradCertPharmPrac Health Economics 2012) knew it was only a matter of time before he returned to the Pacific Islands.  He completed his internship at the Royal Melbourne Hospital in 2011, and travelled to Fiji as a Pharmacy Advisor under the Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development Program. In this role, Alex was responsible for developing a sustainable clinical pharmacy service for a divisional hospital, healthcare communications, and training local pharmacy and medical staff.  He was also involved in the creation of an 'Introduction to Clinical Pharmacy' course for the Pacific Online Learning Health Net, an initiative of the World Health Organisation.  He is currently Team Leader Pharmacist at Priceline Pharmacy Bourke St Mall and a Teaching Associate in Pharmacy Practice and the Intern Training Program at the Faculty. June 2013

Simon Furletti (BPharm 2010) completed his internship at My Chemist Northland and worked as a community pharmacist at My Chemist/Chemist Warehouse in Preston, becoming Pharmacist Regularly and Usually in Charge in 2012. In addition to his regular responsibilities as Manager, he also became involved in the company’s Intern Training Program primarily in the development of learning materials focusing on pharmacology.  In 2013, Simon returned to study, completing a Graduate Certificate in Pharmacy Practice (Internship) at Monash.  A year later he was appointed National Intern Training Program Coordinator for the My Chemist/Chemist Warehouse group with responsibility for over 300 interns Australia wide.  Simon said “Completion of my postgraduate qualification opened up a range of opportunities.”  He took on a greater educational role and expanded his skills and knowledge in other areas including dermatology and consulting with medical practitioners on mental health and geriatrics.  Outside of work, Simon enjoys playing music and seeing live bands, travelling, skiing and is starting to put his practical pharmacy skills to use in brewing beer! December 2015

For someone who graduated only five years ago, Howard Heng (BPharm Sci (Hons) 2010 has definitely made a name for himself at Baxter Laboratories, a developer and manufacturer of skin care and topical therapeutic products based in Melbourne.  Howard’s first role after completing his degree was as an entry level Formulation Chemist.  This role saw him assisting the transfer process from laboratory to production, as well as managing the overall stability program onsite. The critical skillsets he has developed over his time Baxter Laboratories, have enabled Howard to progress through a variety of roles with Baxter, including Product Development Supervisor and Research and Development Manager.  His current role is Senior Business Manager with responsibility of managing the Research and Development team as well as the overall business in Australia and New Zealand.  Howard also likes to keep involved in all aspects of the industry and is an active member of the Australian Society of Cosmetic Chemists.  In his spare time, Howard is an avid traveller and a lover of good food and coffee.  In other exciting news, Howard recently married his high school sweetheart of eleven years – and we wish the happy couple all the best! December 2015

Graduate Lisa Hui (BPharm (Hons) 2011) is someone who likes keeping busy. During her internship year at Austin Health she continued to work in a busy community pharmacy in Northcote. After completing her internship, Lisa continued working at the Austin as a rotational clinical pharmacist and now as a clinical ward pharmacist in the area of haematology, oncology and palliative care.  If this work doesn’t keep Lisa busy enough, she is the current newsletter editor for the Society of Hospital Pharmacists Australia (SHPA), Victorian branch, and sits on the organising committee for the 2015 SHPA Medicines Management Conference as a CPD coordinator.  Seeing the future of our up and coming pharmacists as a priority, Lisa also volunteers her time to mentor current pharmacy students in the Faculty’s Ambassador Program. In her spare time, Lisa loves all things extreme - she has been known to go skydiving, drive a stunt plane and roll a quad bike – all in one day! Aside from the death defying activities, Lisa also has a passion for sports in general, photography and travelling. December 2015

Caroline Le has come a long way since starting school not speaking a word of English. Completing her Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Science (Honours) in 2011, Caroline has already had a number of both personal and professional achievements.  During her Honours year, Caroline worked on neural stems cells and was in awe of how intricate and complex the brain was and became fascinated with the link between stress and illness. Whilst completing her PhD, Caroline has won the Monash University 3 Minute Thesis competition in 2012, the CRC Association’s Showcasing Early Career Researchers competition in 2013 and has coauthored a number of papers, as well as featuring in local media to talk about her work. Caroline plans to continue her research in stress biology but also hopes to work on the communication gap between research and practice, as Caroline terms it, from bench to bedside. December 2014

After graduation, Christine Wun (BPharm Sci (Hons) (Form Sci) 2014) jumped at the opportunity to work for Vaxxas, a Brisbane-based company that is changing the face of vaccine delivery technology. Moving away from Melbourne was a big step, but the company’s reputation and its revolutionary work in vaccine delivery technology were real drawcards for Christine. She joined a team of scientists working on the company’s proprietary Nanopatch, a needle-free vaccine-delivery platform that aims to eliminate the need for cold-chain transport of vaccines. Her job includes optimising different vaccine formulations to be coated onto the Nanopatch, and performing assays to ensure the products meet quality control requirements.  She is also involved in the small-scale manufacturing of the product. Christine hopes that her interest in nano-scaled materials and their application in different fields will open up many more career opportunities down the track, from pharmaceuticals to food products and cosmetics. Outside of work, Christine enjoys travelling and seeking out new experiences – in an ideal world she would like to be able to travel to a new destination every year. She has also taken up kayaking and finds it a good way to relax out on the water, be it the river or out at sea – especially with the scenic spots the sunshine state has to offer. September 2016