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Read our graduate profiles

Who better to give you an idea of what the Graduate Program at Comcare is like than hearing it directly from our previous graduates:

Adrian Hearne
Degree: Bachelor of Science (Chemistry and Mathematics), Bachelor of Laws (Hons)

Adrian’s Graduate Experience


I joined the Comcare graduate program in the year after I completed my bachelor degrees.  I was placed in three different teams through the course of the year . These different placements  exposed me to the breadth of Comcare’s SRC Act-related operations. They have assisted me in my current position, and expanded my understanding of Comcare and the Australian public service.

Comcare’s graduates undertook a variety of activities, chief among which was the Diploma of Government course run by the Public Service Commission. This course consisted of many seminars on topics related to the public service, and a Major Project on an area relevant to Comcare. This course was a good way to obtain a Diploma of Government certificate. We attended many seminars and other events organised Public Service Commission for all of the graduates in the various public service agencies.

I enjoyed my graduate year. The people at Comcare are friendly and eager to assist newcomers. The special status of graduates allowed us to meet and work with senior people in the organisation, and to work across a broad range of topics.


James Allan
Degree: Bachelor of Business (Human Resource Management and Industrial Relations)

James’ graduate experience


Comcare’s Graduate Program was an amazing experience that provided me with a raft of opportunities for future development and success.
I had two rotations during my graduate year within the Human Resources team.  This included a stint in the Work Health and Safety Unit and the Employment Relations team.  The highlight of my rotations was participating in the negotiation of a new enterprise agreement for Comcare.  I even got to sit at the negotiating table!  In addition to this, I was given the opportunity to prepare and brief Senior Management and the Minister’s Office on the progress of the enterprise agreement.

The best part of the Graduate Program by far is the people you get to meet.  Being involved in events and training with graduates from other agencies ensures it’s easy to make friends if you’re new to Canberra.  Coming from Brisbane, it certainly helped me!
I thoroughly enjoyed my graduate year at Comcare and would encourage anyone thinking of a career in the Australian Public Service to start it at Comcare.


Sarah Wijnen
Degree: Bachelor of Commerce, Major in Accounting

Sarah's graduate experience

Comcare’s graduate program provided me with valuable opportunities to develop my skills set and meet different people.
Prior to joining Comcare I worked in an accounting firm. Making the transition to the public service was made easy with the support of my managers, colleagues and fellow graduates.

The training offered through Comcare’s graduate program provided a wide spread of opportunities to build upon my skill set and knowledge. Through completing the APSC’s Diploma of Government, we received training both internally and through the APSC with graduates from other small agencies.
Completing two rotations through the graduate program gave me a thorough understanding of the different sides of Comcare’s business and the opportunity to meet a range of people.  My team leaders have been happy to introduce me to different people to explore the work they do, and think about what I might be interested in pursuing.

As part of the graduate program I was also able to shadow our CEO. Spending two weeks shadowing our CEO exposed me to the decision making process of our agency, provided me with insights into Comcare’s strategic direction and increased my understanding of Comcare’s role in the APS and more broadly in the community.

Key highlights from my graduate year included attending the 2013 IPAA Conference, watching Comcare executive answer questions with Minister Abetz at Senate Estimates and attending graduate events such as the great APS debate and candid reflections from inspiring APS Leaders.

Comcare’s Graduate program provides a supportive environment that exposes you to different areas of the organisation. With the extensive training undertaken and the networking opportunities with colleagues from other agencies, it was a great way to begin my career in the public service.


Sarah Graham
Degree: Bachelor of Arts (Media and Communication)

Sarah's graduate experience

Comcare’s Graduate Program provided supportive environment that made the transition from student to working profession seamless!

I chose to apply for Comcare’s Graduate Program as I wanted to kick-start my career in the public service and make a genuine contribution to the lives of working Australians. The program provided unique opportunities to develop both personal and professional skills in a challenging and nurturing environment.

During my two rotations across the organisation, I was able to gain a broad understanding of the scope and nature of Comcare’s work, explore issues that I had never contemplated before and gain insights into government and public service processes.

What makes Comcare’s Graduate Program so special is the smaller size of the graduate intake. As a result, the organisation’s executive leadership are genuinely engaged in your professional development. During the year, I was fortunate to ‘shadow’ the Chief Executive Officer for an entire week! This allowed me to gain a holistic view of the organisation and valuable insight into decision making processes. This was certainly a unique learning experience!

The Graduate Program also provides the opportunity to complete a Diploma of Government and the Australian Public Service Commission’s Graduate Development Program. Offering, extensive training in the skills required to work and succeed in the Australian Public Service, as well as opportunities to build networks across government.

The graduate year has no doubt placed me in good stead for my future in the Australian Public Service.


Rachel McVicar
Degree: Bachelor of Business with Honours

Rachel's graduate experience

After five (5) years working for a not-for-profit Disability Service Provider, I made the move to Canberra to start my APS career in the Comcare graduate program.. The transition was made easier through the support and regular contact provided by Nanette and the HR team.

In February, the program commenced with a meeting of the other graduates and our buddies from the 2012 intake, making the daunting task that much easier and straightforward.
I completed my first rotation in the Clinical Panel. The Clinical Panel is in the Claims and Liability Management Division and is aimed on evidence based decisions to medical treatment. My time in the Clinical Panel provided me with a solid understanding of what workers compensation and claims management entails for Comcare.

My second rotation was with in Regulatory Operational Support. Operational Support is in the Scheme Management and Regulation Division, and supports the Inspectorate to complete the regulatory functions in Work Health and Safety. This role focuses on the operational processes and procedures to assist in achieving Comcare’s goals for keeping workers safe at work.
I was fortunate enough to shadow the former CEO, Paul O’Connor, Deputy CEO Cathy Skippington and Comcare’s Inspectorate. The shadowing opportunities provided me with a more holistic view of Comcare and gave me a chance to visit our regional offices.

During my graduate year at Comcare I experienced the right mix of both sides of Comcare’s business. This assisted me to identify where in Comcare my skills and values are best suited.. Comcare also aligns its graduate program to the APSC so it was easy to meet a number of other graduates and share experiences through the training days.


Page last updated: 15 Aug 2016