This is the second year that Amana Living has offered a graduate program after receiving more than 170 applications for the inaugural intake. 

There are 12 places available to Amana Living staff and external applicants. The program is part of Amana Living’s long term workforce development strategy, which aims to open up career pathways for clinical specialisation and leadership opportunities in order to build individual and organisational capacity to deliver exceptional aged care.

The graduate roles are permanent positions and the program combines classroom learning with practical experience, including rotations across Amana Living’s residential care, home care and corporate business units. The program was designed by the Amana Living Training Institute and includes aged care clinical leadership courses designed and delivered by Edith Cowan University’s School of Nursing and Midwifery.

Stephanie Buckland, Chief Executive Officer of Amana Living, said the program is part of the organisation’s commitment to investing in the growth of individuals but also the ability of the organisation to keep evolving and responding to situations like COVID-19 and beyond.

Stephanie said: “In 2018 the Aged Care Workforce Strategy highlighted the role of workforce education and training in attracting and retaining the right people with the right skills and the right attitude for aged care. The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety has picked up the Strategy’s themes, also recognising the need to develop specialist aged care education and training for nurses and allied health professionals to broaden their knowledge and capability to support those in aged care.

Our graduate program meets those needs and more. It helps to create an agile workforce who can respond to the evolving needs of older Western Australians, while also improving our ability to respond to health crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. It also makes sure we have a workforce who feel valued and supported in achieving their career ambitions within aged care.”

The annual program is open to external applicants as well as existing Amana Living staff. Applicants must have successfully completed either a Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled Nurse) or Bachelor of Nursing /Allied Health specialty and registered in the last three years.

Applications close on 20 August. The selection process will begin in October with successful graduates starting the program in March 2021.To apply for our Graduate Program, visit our job listings here.

Graduates who are part of the 2020 intake and are currently completing the program include Aroha Lucas, Cindy Forward, and Clare Callanan.

Aroha Lucas

Aroha is a registered nurse and was previously a carer and Occupational Therapy Assistant for seven years. She graduated with a Bachelor of Nursing from Murdoch University in 2018.

“The program is a great idea for newly qualified nurses as the mentors provide extra support and they are really good at explaining things. This gives you confidence in your role, and I’ve even been able to pick up some extra casual shifts.

“I’ve really enjoyed the collaboration with Edith Cowan University. We have one study day a month and the lecturers have been knowledgeable and passionate about aged care. It’s motivated me to look into becoming a nurse practitioner and to specialise in geriatrics as I want to make a difference in aged care.”

Cindy Forward

Cindy is an enrolled nurse, having been a multi-skilled care worker for two years. She obtained a Diploma in Enrolled Nursing from the South Metropolitan TAFE in 2018.

“The graduate program has given me a huge confident boost and I can feel like everything is coming together. It’s great to have the support of the mentors, knowing there is someone who I can talk to and ask questions. I always ask a lot of questions!

“I’ve loved spending time with residents, and getting to know their families. Aged care is much more about developing relationships and spending time with people one to one, which is different to what you’d do in a hospital setting.

“The rotations have really opened my eyes to the opportunities. My first love is dementia care, but I’ve also developed a passion for wound care. I’m constantly learning, and my day is never monotonous.

“The program is awesome.”

Clare Callanan

Clare is an enrolled nurse after working as a carer for five years. She obtained a Diploma of Nursing (Enrolled Nurse) from Open Colleges of Health in 2019.

"The program has helped me grow as a person. Rotating to different sites every three months helps you to become flexible and adaptable, fitting in with a whole new team of people and learning on the job. The experience has really pushed me, plus it’s given me a great insight into geriatric nursing.

I’m looking forward to thinking about what’s next, taking the opportunity to explore the different options available as a result of completing the program. I like to keep growing and challenging myself."