Faculty of Health

Abby Smith, Health Promotion Officer

 "My role is really diverse. One day I might be developing a healthy lifestyle intervention and the next day advocating for changes at a policy level."

-Abby Smith, Health Promotion Officer for the Cancer Council of Tasmania.

Health Promotion Officer for the Council Cancer of Tasmania

As a health promotion officer, there's a lot of flexibility in my role and I'm not always doing the same type of work. One day I might be developing a healthy lifestyle intervention and the next day advocating for changes at a policy level. I enjoy working in a role where I need to continually increase my knowledge and skills in health promotion and create partnerships with key stakeholders.

I find it very rewarding and satisfying to work for the Cancer Council Tasmania (CCT), a not for profit health organisation. Given that CCT is over 90% funded by the public and all funds raised in Tasmania stay in Tasmania, it's a great feeling to know that you can help reduce the burden of cancer among Tasmanians.

My studies gave me a strong background in public health, broadened my knowledge base and helped provide me with skills that I use on a daily basis as a health promotion officer. These include the ability to:

  • Translate evidence into public health practice
  • Investigate issues that affect people's health
  • Critically analyse and conduct research
  • Plan, implement and evaluate public health interventions

I would definitely recommend a career as a Health Promotion Officer for anyone considering a career in public health. I knew there would be a lot of variety in this role and knew I could work in many different areas of public health (e.g. communicable and non-communicable diseases). There is also plenty of opportunities to grow and learn and it's satisfying to work in an industry where you feel like you can make a difference.

If there is one thing I would say to people thinking about studying and working in health, it's that although learning in the classroom is important, try to gain hands-on experience as well. There are different work/internship/volunteering opportunities to engage in while studying that will be invaluable towards your career.