What’s your name? What did you study? When did you graduate?
I’m Rebecca Evans. I studied a Bachelor of Science at the University of Western Australia (UWA), majoring in Neuroscience and Zoology, of all things. I then completed a Masters in Environmental Science, specialising in Environmental Management, graduating in 2015.
Where did you grow up? Important stages of your life (school, education, experience abroad, jobs etc.)
I was born in Singapore and moved to Australia before starting school. I completed school and university in Western Australia, and I still call Perth home (although Canberra is warming up to me). Since graduating I have worked numerous jobs – as an animal welfare officer at a local animal shelter, research officer for a State government department, and a post-graduate industry mentor at my university.
What are your areas of responsibility in your current rotation?
I am currently in my second rotation in the Auctions and Contracts Section. It was a busy start with Auction 7 taking place during my first week. I was involved in the 5-day turn-around of all auction registration applications – the third step in the Auction process which commits participants to the delivery terms of their contracts. My main area of responsibility has been to review and analyse the processes used to track and evaluate our clients’ aggregation portfolios and the emerging contract behaviours.
Can you describe a typical work day?
Attending meetings, making phone calls and coffee dates – a typical work day for me. The nature of my work in this rotation has been half talking to colleagues and clients, half writing reports. My other responsibility as an exec team member of the agency’s Social Club means I’m responsible for organising and setting up charity events; I find my work in the Social Club helps break up my day from the usual grind and gets me up on my feet, something the agency is very supportive of!
Suppose a student was considering CER’s Graduate Program. What would you advise them to study? Are there any soft skills that would be beneficial for them to develop? Should they pursue any sort of work experience?
The CER is made up of people from all different degrees and backgrounds. We have everyone from engineers through to people who have degrees in international studies – as long as you’re passionate about renewables, and are innovative! If I were to recommend courses to take, it would be Economics, Environmental Science, Climate Studies, or something in geospatial analytics. That said, the agency cares a lot about the experiences you have learnt along the way, so I can’t stress enough the power of work experience and volunteering.
What do you love most about your job? What kind of task do you enjoy doing the most?
I love the people, the culture and the sense of inclusion. It’s so great to see such a diverse set of people working together towards a common purpose, and being supported by the agency. I also enjoy being given the opportunity to test, review and resolve issues the agency has begun to face – these projects are a great way to challenge your skills, learn and receive feedback, and to get to know your colleagues across the agency!
What’s the biggest limitation of your job?
The biggest limitation for me is not having an economic bone in my body – something I hadn’t seen as valuable to have while working at the Regulator, but now realise. That said, there are always opportunities to learn more about how the market works, both within and outside of the agency.
What would your career be if you weren’t doing what you’re doing now?
I would most likely be in Perth, working in my last role as a research officer for a state government commission. While this was a rewarding job, I’ve always had a passion for conservation and clean energy, so this has definitely been a step in the right direction for me.
Which three pieces of advice would you give to a current university student?