Humans of Open Universities Australia: Meet Gem

From working for accommodation companies that boast tree-houses in the Swiss countryside, to guiding learners to the right course, Gem believes in doing work that inspires. Let's find out more. 

OUA Marketing Campaign Manager Gemma Riley

Tell us your name and your role at Open Universities Australia?

My name is Gemma Riley and I’m a Marketing Campaign Manager in the Spark to Site Team.

What led you to working at Open Universities Australia and why?

I’m a big believer that if you’re spending most of your time at work, you have to believe in what you do. Open Universities Australia is a not-for-profit organisation that is dedicated to guiding students towards their online study path... which leads to learning something new, unlocking passions and finding your dream job! If that’s not inspiring enough, then I don’t know what is.

What do you do every day to transform lives through education?

My role is to increase awareness of all the incredible opportunities Open Universities Australia has to offer prospective students, who may not have even heard of us yet. I’m pretty lucky because my work means that I get to be that first point of contact to inspire the uncertain and take the leap to study online.

What is your favourite part of your role?

My role within the marketing team means I get to connect with all of the talented people across the organisation, bringing the best bits to the table and then sharing that with the outside world.
I’m also a creative person at heart, so working on campaigns that lets my creativity flow is hugely rewarding!

What is your proudest moment or career highlight during your time at Open Universities Australia?

I was lucky enough to be involved in our partnership with the Victorian Institute of Sport and their Open Day earlier this year. I designed the Open Universities Australia event booth top-to-toe, which had athletes and students engaging with it throughout the day.

What would you say to students thinking about taking the leap into online study?

Take it one step at a time! It can be overwhelming to comprehend years of dedication to study but take it as it comes, one subject at a time. Also, you’re not alone. There is an incredibly dedicated, knowledgeable and caring team of experts that are here to help you along the way.

What would you say to someone thinking about working for Open Universities Australia?

If you’re looking for an organisation that values diversity, thinking outside of the box and is full of passionate humans that bring their best selves to work every day, then click that apply button!

What do you do when you’re not working behind the scenes at Open Universities Australia? How does this make you a better team member?

I love being active and out in nature, with my hiking boots on and camera in-hand. I also love exploring new places around Melbourne – it’s such a vibrant city that has so much to offer.
And when Monday rolls around? I believe the above brings out my curiosity to find those unique perspectives and drives my desire to connect with those around me.

Finally, tell us a fun fact about you!

I spent a memorable few months overseas working for unique accommodation companies, including tree-houses nestled in the Swiss countryside and glass igloos under the stars in the Arctic Circle! 

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