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Aged care nurse receives Leadership in Nursing Scholarship


Content team
6 September 2022
Nurse Amanda Christie sitting at work desk
Bonnie Boezeman AO Leadership in Nursing Scholarship recipient Amanda Christie

Deputy Director of Nursing at a Coffs Harbour aged care home and Southern Cross University alumna Amanda Christie has been awarded the Bonnie Boezeman AO Leadership in Nursing Scholarship.

The scholarship, awarded by Bonnie Boezeman AO in partnership with Chief Executive Women (CEW), supports a female nurse with up to $20,000 to study the Master of Healthcare Leadership at Southern Cross University.

Mrs Christie completed a nursing degree at Southern Cross University in 2021 and will now use the scholarship to return to her alma mater and undertake the Masters degree.

Chief Executive Women founding member and business leader Bonnie Boezeman AO created the scholarship in response to the nursing crisis in Australia.

“This year, I am thrilled that Amanda Christie has won the fourth year of the nursing scholarship with impressive credentials. As the Deputy Director at Legacy Nursing Home in Coffs Harbour, Amanda has always demonstrated great initiative, leadership and professionalism across her various roles, as supported by Shawn Bergquist, CEO of Coffs Coast Legacy (RACF),” scholarship benefactor Ms Boezeman said.

“What the judges found most impressive is Amanda’s passion for nursing within the aged care sector and determination to devote her energies to help fulfil the much needed reform suggested from the Royal Commission into the aged care industry. She was an outstanding candidate. Her leadership growth potential is endless.

“Due to the serious crisis in nursing shortages in Australia, we need to find ways to support women nurses to develop the leadership skills that will help them both advance their own careers as well as grow the nursing sector as a whole.”

Mrs Christie has worked in nursing for eight years and joined Coffs Harbour Legacy Nursing Home in 2020. She undertook the Bachelor of Nursing at Southern Cross University’s Coffs Harbour campus and became a registered nurse in November 2021. Within six months of finishing her degree, Mrs Christie was promoted to the position of Deputy Director of Nursing. In this position, Mrs Christie oversees the team of nurses and makes sure they are supported and able to complete their tasks.

Mrs Christie said she feels lucky to have received the scholarship. “It makes the Masters possible for me. Not only is it a financial win but it’s going to give me an extra motivation because I have CEW counting on me and wanting me to succeed,” she said.

“In terms of my role, it’s going to give me the tools, knowledge and credibility to lead the team. Eventually I’d love to be the Director of Nursing.”

Southern Cross University Chancellor Sandra McPhee AM congratulated Mrs Christie on her scholarship. “Supporting and celebrating our nursing leaders has never been more important for Australia,” she said.

“This prestigious scholarship does just that. It is wonderful to see it awarded to someone so accomplished and ambitious as Amanda.”

Chief Executive Women has offered the Bonnie Boezeman AO Leadership in Nursing Scholarship for a nursing professional studying the Master of Healthcare Leadership at Southern Cross University annually since 2019. Previous recipients include Le Truong (2021), Lisa Vilé (2020) and Danielle Coates (2019).

Chief Executive Women has more than 900 members with leading roles in the private and public sector. Since 1985, CEW has influenced and engaged all levels of Australian business and government to achieve gender balance. Through advocacy, research, targeted programs and scholarships, CEW helps to remove the barriers to women’s progression and ensure equal opportunity for prosperity.

The Bonnie Boezeman AO Leadership in Nursing Scholarship allows the recipient to study the Master of Healthcare Leadership, an online course designed for healthcare professionals to develop the skills to lead teams in Australia’s public and private healthcare systems. The two-year course is open to professionals working in a health science discipline such as nursing, allied health or mental health. 

Find out more about scholarships at Southern Cross.