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Docklander - DEc 16 / Jan 17

06 Dec 2016

Docklander - DEc 16 / Jan 17 Image

Career woman and nurturing mum

By Sunny Liu

Docklander-for-a-year Erin Watson-Lynn is excelling in her career in higher education where she advocates for opportunities for young people and children.

Ms Watson-Lynn has recently been appointed by the Federal Minister for Education to be the board chair for the National Centre for Student Equity and Higher Education, based at Curtin University in Perth.

She is currently working as an entrepreneurship lecturer at Monash University and the chair of the Digital Innovative Creative Enterprise (DICE), a non-for-profit organisation supported by the Prime Minister’s wife Lucy Turnbull that aims to inspire entrepreneurship among young children.

A career woman and mother of a three-year-old, Ms Watson-Lynn says she has maintained a healthy balance between her work and family.

She says Docklands is the perfect location for both her career and her family life. She previously lived in Mount Eliza and had to commute more than two hours daily to go to work and attend events.

But now she is enjoying Docklands’ central location, where she has access to everything she needs.

“I like to sell Docklands to other people. I’m an advocate for high-density and high-accessibility areas. I think living here has helped my career too because it saves me more time to attend to my tasks and networking events,” she said.

Being the new chair of the equity centre, Ms Watson-Lynn will be succeeding former WA Premier Carmen Lawrence and former senator Fred Chaney.

At 31-years-old, Ms Watson-Lynn might be the youngest chair in the board’s history.

“It’s quite unusual for a young woman like me to be leading a team of senior academics and professionals. But I’m used to challenges and I hope to earn trust from the board members with my experience,” she said.

Empowering young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, young women and indigenous people has always been something close to Ms Watson-Lynn’s heart.

“I want to tackle challenges such as youth employment and gender inequality both locally and globally,” she said.

She is also close to finishing her PhD in immigration and entrepreneurship at Monash University. Her academic background is in research and policy, which she wants to apply in her new role. She also has ambition to enter federal politics some day.

It is not the easiest path for a young woman. But Ms Watson-Lynn welcomes every opportunity and challenge that comes her way.

“It was very hard when I just started to build my public profile. But over the years it has become much easier because I’ve earned the trust and experiences,” she said. “It’s a very different game now.”

She has since appeared on ABC’s Q&A program and has been featured in The Australian. She has successfully gone from going out of her way to build her connections to maintaining a good working relationship with federal ministers and local business owners.

Though she has got a lot on her plate, Ms Watson-Lynn says she manages an appropriate work/life balance.

“I strive to be a role model for my young daughter. I’m still a nurturing mum,” she says.

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