Naomi nurses a strong career in health 10 years after completing her diploma

02 July 2024
A young woman wearing a light blue nurses uniform standing in front of a cream-coloured wall.
Rockhampton Hospital Nurse and CQU TAFE alumnus Naomi Mallinson

By Greg Chapman

In the 10 years since she completed her training at CQUniversity Naomi Mallinson has fostered a very healthy career as one of Rockhampton Hospital’s rising theatre nurses.

CQUniversity caught up with Naomi as part of its 10-year anniversary celebrations of CQU merging with CQ TAFE to see what she’s achieved over the past decade.

In just 10 years, Naomi has battled through the COVID-19 pandemic, raised three children and taken her Diploma of Enrolled Nursing and Bachelor of Nursing degree even further. 

“Since graduating from CQU in 2015, I managed to complete a post graduate certificate in Perioperative Nursing while at the Mater Private Hospital in Rockhampton where I worked full-time,” she said.

“Upon completing my post graduate certificate, I felt I had found my niche. I stayed with the Mater for another six years, building skills and knowledge in theatre nursing. After this I reached a point where my I felt my experience was stunted and I needed to expand my skills in theatre trauma.”

It was in February 2021 when Naomi made the decision to work at the Rockhampton Hospital where she was able to pursue her dream of being a trauma theatre nurse.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic initially put a dampener on her pursuits, she persevered. 

“We all did what we had to do as nurses and continued to care for people and protected ourselves and families from the virus,” she said.

“It was definitely hard to deal with at times, especially with having to home school children and wearing masks pretty much 15 hours in the day and night, at work and in the community, but we were all going through it together and no matter what, I had to do the best job I knew how to get through the tough times, so getting vaccinated to keep my job, to put food on the table for my children was what I had to do.”

Now Naomi is working in the operating theatre as an Instrument/Circulating Nurse and as a Clinical Nurse in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. She’s also started further studies as part of her long-term goal to specialise in perioperative services.

“Being a Clinical Nurse in the operating theatre, my experience and knowledge is shared with the junior nurses and my co-workers where we work together to ensure patients receive the best possible surgical outcomes,” she said. 

“Working alongside a whole team of theatre staff including anaesthetists, surgeons, operational services staff, registered midwives, registrars, central sterilising nurses and medical representatives is such a fantastic experience. 

“I love my role so much and I love the people I work with. I feel very blessed to have a job that I'm so passionate about.”

She said her role as a mum is equally as important as being a nurse.

“My children are pretty much grown up, with my eldest now a third-year electrician working in the mines, whilst my other 17-year-old son and my 15-year-old-daughter are at Emmaus College completing Year 10 and 11,” she said.

“They are very proud of my achievements, and I feel this drives them to want to do well at school so as they too can have good career opportunities when they finish school.” 

Looking back on her time at CQU TAFE Naomi encouraged anyone thinking about studying nursing to “just do it”.

“You’re never too old and there is never a right time. As long as you have a genuine interest in your field of study you can achieve results,” she said.

“I often think back of when I first studied at CQU TAFE and completed my enrolled nursing and how happy I was to have achieved a Diploma. But to then to go on to study university for a Bachelor’s degree was my long term goal. 

“My hard work has paid off, and I couldn't be happier.”

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