For Sarah Anderton and Richard Anderton, a little sibling rivalry never went astray. Taking Chinese language courses at JCU managed to land both of them a job abroad.
“Sarah went to China upon graduation and I remember very clearly my jealousy hearing all of her stories from Tianjin whilst I was completing my final year,” Richard says. “I joined her immediately after graduating and ended up living in China for more than 13 years. We went on later to work at the Australian Embassy in Beijing together as well.”
Richard’s sister Sarah says that knowledgeable and passionate lecturers inspired her to seek out opportunities working abroad in China. “I was fascinated by my lecturers’ stories and it inspired me to move to China to teach English and learn more about Chinese culture,” she says. Sarah says that her lecturers' influence opened her world to fantastic experiences abroad.
Sarah and Richard both saw their time at the university as the first critical stepping-stone to the rest of their careers. They also later found themselves working together for the Australian government at the Australian embassy in Beijing.
In fact, Sarah and Richard would never have found themselves in Townsville if not for their father, Rick Anderton’s, passionate determination to move across the country and develop regional journalism in north Queensland.
Rick worked at the university as a casual journalism lecturer and Sarah found her parents' influence to be very important even from a young age.
My parents provided great support and encouragement for us to develop ourselves, and highlighted the importance of higher education, despite them not having the opportunity themselves.
JCU Alumni Sarah Anderton
Their cousin, Sonia, also moved across the country to attend university in Townsville. “The Marine Biology course was thought to be the best in Australia,” she says. “Since I had family in Townsville it was easy for me to move from my hometown of Perth and stay with them initially when I started university.”
Like her family before her, Lara’s degree was just the first step. She now works for Queensland Rail in Townsville where she faces new and interesting experiences every day. “QR has provided me with a diverse range of work giving me a spectrum of experience,” Lara says. “Every day is different, with different problems and different solutions, which is always interesting.”
D’Arcy echoes similar sentiments: “When I first got this job teaching at the university, I couldn’t believe that I could do mathematics all day and get paid for it.”