Griffith Business School student Leah Brokmann heads to Singapore this year confident that the life she has known on the Gold Coast for the past two years is about to change.
Leah, who has been named one of six 2017 New Colombo Plan (NCP) scholarship recipients from Griffith University, has chosen Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University for her six-month study tour which begins this January.
Leah chose Nanyang Technological for its reputation in South-East Asia as a business school.
“My only experience of Singapore so far is as a short stopover on my travels to Europe, so living in Singapore will be an exciting part of my NCP experience,” she said.
“I loved Singapore when I was there, for its atmosphere and its culture, but also because it is such a strong business centre for the region.”
The Bachelor of Business student, who is majoring in Sport Management and Marketing at Griffith University, is also looking forward to undertaking an internship with one of Singapore’s rising national sport organisations, Netball Singapore. It is the nation’s peak body for a sport that Leah has played at a senior level in her home state of NSW.
Netball is one of the fastest growing women’s sports in Singapore, with Netball Singapore boasting about 80,000 active members.
“It’s such a great opportunity and I hope to get some experience in Netball Singapore’s high-performance technical department as well as their national events program,” said Leah.
“Ultimately I want to work for a national sporting body in Australia, so this is a really big step towards the career I have always wanted.”
Netball is a consuming passion for Leah who grew up in Coffs Harbour on the NSW North Coast. She and her twin sister Natalee rose through the ranks of Netball NSW to make their first state championships back in 2007.
In 2015, Leah was named among 13 players in the Netball Merit Squad following her performance at the Clubs NSW Academy Games.
She moved to the Gold Coast in 2015 to begin her Bachelor of Business at Griffith. Part of the allure was the upcoming Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
“Working with the Commonwealth Games is something I’d like to achieve on my return, and I think my experience in Singapore will be invaluable,” said Leah.
“Either way I’d like to work on pinnacle events staged by Australian major sporting bodies, although I’m open to broadening my horizons internationally. Australia is an amazing place but if an opportunity opens up elsewhere I’d definitely jump at the chance.”
Leah, who was encouraged to apply for the NCP scholarship by Honours College Manager Dr Jeanne McConachie, says the NCP application process itself has been a huge learning experience.
“I’ve always considered myself to be quite a confident person, but through the nine-month application process my confidence has grown dramatically and that’s something that Jeanne instilled in me from the beginning,” she said.
“Through the NCP scholarship program, I hope to be able to hone my career goals to give me a definite perspective of what I want to pursue in my career. I’m also hoping the local culture in Singapore will impact me as well.
“I do know that this unique experience will bring great personal and professional connections, and hopefully establish one of the key goals of NCP, an educational passage for others. I’d like to think that in the near future I could help someone with similar interests experience this amazing journey as well.”