Inspirational: The common trait between Dairy and IT guests

On Tuesday October 29, eleven PR students attended the final theMediaPod dinner for 2013. Business women Natalie Collard and Kate Carruthers chatted with students and shared personal stories, advice and inspiration over pizza and drinks. Alison Todd reports.

DAIRY farming and IT aren’t two sectors that you associate with each other, but common themes for women in business emerged at the year’s final theMediaPod dinner with guests Natalie Collard and Kate Carruthers.

Kate Carruthers (left) and Deakin University student Kate Master discuss a bright idea about "the internet of things".

Kate Carruthers (left) and Deakin University student Kate Masters discuss a bright idea about “the internet of things”.

Natalie, Chief Executive Officer of Australian Dairy Farmers (ADF), was this year’s Telstra Business Women’s Award winner in the Community & Government category. Prior to joining ADF, Natalie was the Manager-Rural Affairs for the National Farmers’ Federation. Natalie graduated from the Australian Institute of Company Directors and also has a Bachelor of Arts (Social Sciences) from La Trobe University.

With a down-to-earth and positive attitude, Natalie was an inspiring female role model for all attending the dinner, passing on an abundance of advice to students. In feedback about the night, students commented:

Natalie was happy to share insight into women’s roles and rights within the workplace and information about company culture. She also emphasized the importance of establishing a career plan”

Natalie taught us the importance of integrity in whatever job or workplace you take! I really enjoyed the emphasis she added on women supporting and empowering each other in our career endeavors.”

 Kate Carruthers, IT Manager at the University of New South Wales, is a highly regarded business leader, innovator, commentator and communicator. Kate also has extensive experience in senior executive roles for diverse organisations such as GE, AMP, Westfield and government.

In addition to a spontaneous light show demonstrating the “internet of things”, Kate provided students with a wealth of information regarding the importance of understanding technology and networking. Typical of student comments were:

“Kate is so intelligent. I love new media and it was fascinating discussing The Internet of things with her, including potential issues, ethics, and the future of PR/ communication in this regard. A really lovely, intelligent lady with strong views.”

“Kate had some really interesting insights into the new wave of technology and how it is going to change all industries, including PR and communication.”

Deakin University students would like to thank Natalie and Kate for sharing their time and wisdom with us. We loved getting to know you both and hope our paths cross again in the future.

To find out about upcoming theMediaPod events, subscribe at http://eepurl.com/mKRUP

Follow Alison on Twitter: @alison_233

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