A young Council employee has just been recognised as one of the brightest students at one of Australia’s most prestigious universities.
22-year-old Kellyville resident Melanie Sefton recently won the Dean’s Scholar Award at Sydney University, having achieved the highest average mark of all students studying a Bachelor of Applied Science – Occupational Therapy.
Employed by Council as an Occupational Therapist, Melanie specialises in home modifications for Hills Community Care clients.
“I always enjoyed the course and have been passionate about occupational therapy since I decided to study it in Year 12,” Melanie said.
“To receive the Dean’s Award was a great honour and I couldn’t be happier.”
Melanie said despite the excellent education she received at Sydney University and prior to that at Kellyville High School, the best learning was on the job.
“My job is very rewarding because I get to help people every day in their homes.”
“I finished my degree on a Friday and the following Monday I started at Council.”
“Hills Community Care is a service committed to aged, frail and disabled residents – so much of what I do is about making the homes of residents safer and more functional for them to live in.”
“In many cases this means putting in new stair railings, doing safety checks around the home or walking them through how we can make situations safer.”
Ms Sefton said the chance of a resident suffering a nasty fall increased with age and she was now spearheading a falls prevention initiative at Council.
“Prevention is always better than the cure so anything we can do to educate elderly residents on how to avoid falls will go a long way.”
“What seems fairly innocuous to us can be quite painful and debilitating for our older residents.”
Ms Sefton said she looked forward to creating more proactive prevention programs at Council.