The Medical Career Service of AMA Victoria engages with doctors at all stages of their professional journey, from students and interns through to senior specialists and academics in leadership positions. Many engage our service to obtain guidance in advancing their careers, while others seek support in navigating career options, or to transition both within and outside of medicine.
Choosing a specialty
Choosing a specialty is one of the most important career decisions for a doctor. Some study medicine with a clear career pathway in mind; others commence with no idea of the direction they might head. In this series, we profile a range of specialists who reflect on their careers and selected fields, with the aim of helping others with their decision-making.
Dr Clare Collins: Head of Neonatology at Western Health
"I was attracted to the field of neonatology by the positive experiences I had during clinical rotations as a medical student."
Dr Greg Young: Forensic pathologist
"When I was lying on a beach in Spain, I was contacted by a friend who was training in anatomical pathology. She suggested that I consider it as a career choice."
Dr Joanna Glengarry: Forensic Pathologist, Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine
"I am embarrassed to admit this, but as a teenager I read Patricia Cornwall books (on forensic pathology) and loved them."
Dr Alison Skene: Anatomical Pathologist at Austin Health
"When I started learning pathology in third-year university, I thought ‘Wow, finally, this is what medicine is all about’."
Mr James Keck: Clinical Director of Colorectal Surgery at Eastern Health
"It was only when I started work as an intern and resident that it gradually dawned on me that what I loved was the practical nature of surgery."
Dr Michael Baker: Procedural GP, Gippsland
“At first, I planned to go work in Africa. Six weeks in Kenya as a medical student was an incredible experience but I realised I was not going to change things there on my own.”
Dr Steve Dunn: General Practitioner, Mount Gambier
“After graduating from Adelaide with a traditional medical education, I was perceptive enough to be aware of multiple clinical inadequacies and so, like many of my peers, went to the NHS to 'practise on the Poms'.”
DiT mentorship program
Our mentorship program provides a supportive and safe format for DiTs to consider and discuss career and professional development opportunities and challenges, by engaging with a more experienced doctor.
Dr Richard Harvey (mentor) / Dr Andrew Mulligan (mentee)
Dr Mulligan believes that having a mentor completely independent of his work environment is liberating. “That ability to bounce ideas off. There is a lack of judgement which is great.”
Dr Andrea Nies (mentor) GP / Dr Joanna Schafer (mentee)
“It is helpful to have a mentor who has a lifestyle and a career that I would like to have”.
Dr Peter Hunter (mentor) / Dr Nicholas Sharrock (mentee)
“My mentor, Dr Peter Hunter, has provided me with some really good advice on interpersonal relations and issues in the workplace. Those sort of workplace skills naturally translate into other areas as well.”
We would love to hear from you if you have a career story you would like to share.
Alternatively, if we can assist you in exploring your career options, please book a free 15-minute career call or a career coaching session here.