Covering the Ballarat and Grampians regions

Olivia Aringo
Going Rural Health Administration officer


Olivia is responsible for all administration processes associated with the Going Rural Health team, from student financial assistance applications, financial payments, and general administration tasks. 

She is generally the first point of contact for students connecting with the team, and is happy to assist students to connect to the appropriate team member for all their placement related needs.

Trish Thorpe
Associate Lecturer, Rural Placement Coordinator

Clinical Biochemist/Medical Scientist and Teacher

Trish is the main point of contact in Ballarat, managing the relationships with all our students, supervisors, staff, health services and local universities in the Ballarat/Grampians region. She also delivers some education, provides mentoring support if required, organises student events and helps with rural engagement and orientation.

Trish is always happy to assist in solving problems and sourcing placements, and is happy to take your call.

Lauren Woodhart
associate lecturer in interprofessional rural education


Lauren organises service-learning placements in the Ballarat/Grampians region, providing support to students, host-site staff and supervisors. Originally from rural north-west Victoria, Lauren has worked in rural and regional areas, gaining experience in interprofessional practice and student supervision. Lauren will liaise with partners and host sites in our region to expand student placements, offer enjoyable learning experiences and bring allied health services to areas of need.


Covering the Greater Shepparton and Goulburn Valley regions

Kimberley Ackland
Associate Lecturer in Interprofessional Rural Education

Occupational Therapist

Kim is an occupational therapist who is originally from Shepparton. Kim has worked in hospital and community settings and is familiar with the health needs of rural and regional towns. Kim will be engaging with local community and health services to design new placements for allied health students to complete rurally. Kim will work to collaboratively support both students and service providers before, during and after placements.

Rebecca Maw


Rebecca is a podiatrist by background with a clinical focus on high-risk feet. Rebecca has spent her career working in the Goulburn Valley region in both public health and private across a wide variety of settings. Rebecca is passionate about innovative placement models that support the current rural health workforce and encourage students to consider working rurally. Rebecca is always up for a chat and to help problem problems solve for students, universities and health services.


Covering the Hume and Ovens Murray Goulburn regions

Paula Collins
associate lecturer in interprofessional rural education



Tara Case
associate lecturer in interprofessional rural education

Occupational Therapist

Tara has joined the team after working with us as a casual student supervisor. She is an Occupational Therapist (OT) with over 20 years experience working across a range of settings. Tara combines her OT background with a Master in Applied Positive Psychology to deliver evidence based wellbeing strategy, assessment and intervention services, and develops student OT placements for the team.

associate lecturer in interprofessional rural education

Occupational Therapist

Jess has joined the team after working as a casual clinical supervisor. She has lived and worked in the local area throughout her career and is passionate about rural health.  Jess has a diverse skill set having worked across several practice settings, also gaining experience in interprofessional practice. She will be engaging with local community and health services to design and support allied health student placements.


Professor Lisa Bourke
Director - University Department of Rural Health

Social Worker/Sociologist

Lisa facilitates and oversees all of the activities of the UDRH, which involves the Aboriginal Health team and research teams examining three streams of Culturally Inclusive Rural Healthcare, Rural Chronic Ill-health and Rural Health Workforce. Lisa designed the expansion of the Going Rural Health team in 2016 to support existing students undertaking placements in our region, to bring new students to our region and to develop new placements, particularly in areas of health need.


Rebecca Oates
ACTING MANAGER/Associate Lecturer: Rural Health Community Placements

Speech Pathologist

Rebecca has lived and worked in the region for a long time and has well established networks. She is expanding service learning and community based placements in the Hume and Ovens Murray Goulburn regions, including supporting students in primary schools, social services organisations and outreach allied health clinics.