Meet our graduates

From entrepreneurs to innovators to leaders in their chosen field. Graduates of the School of Business and Tourism are pursuing what matters in industry and community.

Pamela Brook

Co-founder of Cape Byron Distillery and Brookfarm, Chair of Northern Rivers Food

Master of Business Administration graduate

Brookfarm is Australia's leading producer of premium quality macadamia products, including muesli, muesli bars, granola and macadamia oils. But the business lost all of its airline, hotel and foodservice business when COVID-19 hit.

But the Cape Byron Distillery, which lost all of its bar and restaurant customers and cellar door tour trade, switched to producing a hand sanitiser because of ready access to alcohol.

The turnaround happened in just nine days from start to finish.

“We focused on product development, packaging and ingredient sourcing and worked all of our contacts – we did it together as a team and made a product that we are truly proud of – that helps people, and they love.”

“It has been a huge task and we were so fortunate to be able to assist the community and our employees.”

Learn more about Pamela Brook’s remarkable story.

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Poto Williams

New Zealand MP, Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector, Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Immigration and Social Development

Master of Business Administration graduate, 2018 Southern Cross University Outstanding Alumnus of the Year

Poto Williams is the first New Zealander of Cook Islander heritage to be elected as a Member of Parliament, and the first of Pacific Islander heritage to become Speaker in the House of Representatives.

She is also a survivor of domestic abuse and an advocate for child safety.

While working at a community mental health organisation and at the age of 48, Poto studied an MBA online through Southern Cross University.

“We definitely need more women in parliament, as we bring such a different way of working to these institutions which is desperately needed. If you remove Australia and New Zealand, the Pacific has the lowest rates of women in parliament in the world. We need to ensure women are represented and I am really passionate about ensuring women get into parliament and significant leadership roles,” she said.

Poto Williams shares some of the challenges of governing in the New Zealand lockdown.


Tim Pocock

Marketing Manager - La Roche-Posay & CeraVe ACD ANZ at L'Oréal

Bachelor of Business, major in Marketing

Tim is an experienced brand marketing manager in the beauty and retail industry. He has worked at L’Oreal for the past seven years, rising through the ranks from assistant product manager (Ralph Lauren, Viktor&Rolf & Diesel Fragrances) to brand manager (Giorgio Armani Fragrances), senior brand manager (Giorgio Armani Fragrances & Beauty) and now marketing manager for La Roche-Posay & CeraVe.

“I love the varied role of marketing. One week, I'm doing media plans and signing off on the purchase of media spots. The next week, I'm budgeting and doing retail sales' projections a year ahead.”

“The future for me, I see an international career. I want to take what I’m doing currently overseas and do it in another market. I think that’s an exciting opportunity working for L’Oreal.”

The former Lismore resident relocated to Melbourne in the final year of his studies and completed the degree online. “The best thing about the course at SCU was two lecturers in particular, who had hands-on experience in the industry and different ways of thinking. They encouraged a go-getter attitude and getting your foot in the door.”

 

 

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Tim Pocock: Bachelor of Business graduate

My name is Tim Pocock I work for L'Oréal Australia with Giorgio Armani and I am the senior product manager here. I started out at University of Southern Cross in Lismore studying a Bachelor of Business majoring in marketing.

It was a fantastic degree and I spent the last year of that degree studying online when I moved on to Melbourne, and I made the change. The move to Melbourne was getting myself ready for a career and a job to make sure I could get into the industry, and when I moved down to Melbourne I was working in general pants. Working in general pants was in retailing [and] really taught me the importance of networking and meeting people and keeping your ears and eyes open for opportunities.

One particular day I was serving a customer who came in and he was there buying something for the weekend. [We were] chatting and he found out that I was in marketing, just finished my marketing degree and wanted to get my step into the industry and he really helped me out there and actually got me into the ad agency that he was the head creative director at. I think that was a real true lesson that I always reflect on and look back on. Take every opportunity as an opportunity within your career. You never know who you're going to meet and where that's going to take you.

Since then I've actually worked in advertising agencies for a few years and making the change from an ad agency to L'Oréal Australia was a big difference.

Ad agencies being a little bit more free-flowing, a little bit more day to day with whatever happens. Whereas L'Oréal Australia is very big corporate industry in a much different style of marketing to see. I've been here for 3 years and really enjoy that every day is different. The job is very fast pace, there is a lot of deadlines to meet but it's a lot of fun at the same time.

The future for me with a seasoned international career I want to take what I'm doing currently my role overseas and do it in another market. I think that's a really exciting opportunity working for L'Oréal Australia.

I think that anyone thinking of going to university just do it and the thing is just start, you need a degree and that will take you on a journey [you] need to go on.

If you don't get into the right degree at the start it doesn't matter, you can always change to do something different and that's the quite amazing thing about university. It's always folding and changing.

For example, I signed up for a Bachelor of Business majoring in Accounting. I came out with a Bachelor of Business majoring in Marketing. Two totally different sides of business but both started in the same position.

I'm Tim Pocock, this is my story.

 


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Sarah Beardmore

Co-founder of Nown, Co-founder of Dorsal

Bachelor of Business

Entrepreneur and surfer. Sarah is the co-founder of Dorsal, the world's most advanced and reliable crowdsourced shark alerting app, and Nown, a global directory in the form of a friend-sourced icon-based map.

After being a professional surfer, competing on the World Qualifying Series and winning English, British and a European title, she stumbled into start-ups.

Her career was made possible by studying a Southern Cross business degree online while competing on the WQS tour.

“The Dorsal app is no longer just about crowdsourced reporting, but this new partnership with technical partner Onboard Smarts means we now have a whole supported content management system to help manage and analyse the information. Reports come from official channels as well as public sightings which are mediated before releasing to the app,” says Sarah.

“Studying business through the University’s Elite Athlete Program was the best decision I ever made to maximise those skills, connections, ideas and managing change while I was still on tour.”

Read more about Sarah’s journey to business success.


Christian Lugnan

Coffs Habour Regional Manager at the Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations

Bachelor of Business, major in Accounting

Christian works with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations in the areas of governance and financial viability. His region extends from the Hawkesbury River (north-west of Sydney) in the south through to the Tweed River (NSW/Qld border) and west to Moree NSW. He also manages ORIC's Brisbane, Cairns and Thursday Island presence.

“We are the Indigenous version of ASIC, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission,” says Christian, a Gumbaynggirr man from the Coffs Harbour region.

"Within Indigenous communities, accountants play a valuable role in promoting financial literacy and economic development to individuals and organisations. When those accountants are Indigenous, people take notice.”

"While I did an accounting major, the degree gave me so much more than just financial skills. That's the real benefit of a degree: you begin to think more broadly, develop strategies, analyse risk, and see the bigger picture. And as a member of the Indigenous community, I get to share that with others who may not have had the opportunity to access that level of education or experience. I get to travel the country and meet wonderful people who are really inspiring and want to do good things for their community."

Christian is pictured at Hungry Head. The Gumbaynggirr name for Hungry Head is Girrimarring or fruit bat. The Girrimarring is a male totem for Gumbaynggirr men.

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Jana Gibson

Head of Member Services at APRA AMCOS

Bachelor of Business in Tourism

Jana leads a team of 80 staff who advocate for APRA AMCOS’ 95,000 members – Australia’s songwriters, composers and music publishers -- to ensure they receive royalties for their works.

“We need to be present in the lives of music creators throughout their careers and through business cycles. We are a vital part of the industry ecosystem as we provide services, opportunities and advocacy to support their livelihoods,” Jana says.

She’s the sole woman in the senior leadership team.

“It is important for me as a person to get to this level at APRA AMCOS, I’m excited by the opportunity and the organisation’s belief in me.”

Jana studied a business and tourism degree to broaden her horizons when she left high school.

“The strong practical component of the degree in the event and hospitality space kick-started my career. I also loved studying at a regional university. Because I moved out of home to live in Lismore I was in an environment where I had to be definitely independent and I found that conducive to building a strong social network. I’ve made lifelong friends.

“The degree had a strong reputation in the industry when I graduated. I am very proud to say that I went to university at Southern Cross.”

Learn more about Jana's story

Visit Where are they now? to discover more Southern Cross business, tourism, and IT graduates’ stories.


Contact the School of Business and Tourism

Dean and Head of School, Head of the Gold Coast campus

T: +61 7 5589 3054

E: sbat.pa@scu.edu.au

Assistant to Head of School

T: +61 7 5589 3174

E: sbat.pa@scu.edu.au

Deputy Head of School, Director of Teaching & Learning

T: +61 7 5589 3209

E: david.noble@scu.edu.au

Deputy Dean, Digital Enterprise Lab Director

E: darshana.sedera@scu.edu.au

Course Coordinators

Visit the Staff page

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