The world can be a scary place sometimes, but it is also exciting and full of opportunities. There are so many possible roads to take after studying – from going straight into the workforce to taking a gap year to go traveling. For some, it’s navigating the workforce and gaining experience through internships. Indigenous interns, Nakita Kirby and Jazleen De Busch’s experiences with Medibank exceeded their expectations, making it an easy decision to come back for more.
Nakita and Jaz each grabbed an opportunity to be a part of the Medibank family in 2015 and in doing so have gained valuable skills and experiences. Their chance to join Medibank after school and during their tertiary studies is thanks to the help and support of Yalari and CareerTrackers, both of which put them in touch with the business.
“I was a Yalari scholar,” says Jaz. “Medibank is one of their partners and I was approached by one of the staff members while I was in Year 12. They said there was an opportunity to work, make money and get exposure, and right then I knew this was something I couldn’t let pass.”
Nakita, on the other hand, had already begun her University days when the chance to intern came up.
“I was scooped up by CareerTrackers, which is an organisation that supports Indigenous University students find meaningful internships,” Nakita says. “It was tricky at first because a lot of companies on offer were focused more towards areas such as engineering and business. I was the first CareerTrackers student to inquire about companies in the healthcare industry and am also the first CareerTrackers student to intern at Medibank!”
Nakita Kirby returning to Medibank for a new internship.
Medibank works hard to create a strong connection between the business and Indigenous communities. This is done through the Indigenous internship program, connecting with local Traditional Owner groups, recognition of cultural events and the Medibank Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP). The RAP is something both Nakita and Jaz have worked on and Jaz says that she was completely blown away by the business’ commitment and heart that is put into it.
“The RAP is absolutely incredible. I’ve never seen an organisation or institution value Indigenous etymologies like Medibank does. We look at it at a holistic level, not in a tokenistic way or just to tick a box.”
Jazleen De Busch presenting at the Medibank RAP launch.
Nakita agrees, saying that she’s looking forward to seeing not only how it progresses but how those who are involved in it use it in their everyday life.
“The RAP is thoroughly thought out. I’m very interested in seeing how those who are accountable for it, value and use the RAP to align with their individual roles in the business.”
Between the two of them, Jaz and Nakita have participated in six Medibank internships. When you find a workplace with a purpose and values that connect with your own, it’s not hard to make the decision to return.
“What I love about Medibank is the diversity and inclusion that is so evident throughout the whole business. If more organisations had a mindset like Medibank, the world would be turning in a very different way,” says Jaz.
Asked how her internship connects with what she has studied and continues to help her with her future education, Nakita says that being with Medibank provided her with the clarity that she needed.
“In 2015, I completed rotations within the business and it helped me find out what I really wanted to do. So for my internship this time around, I had my eye on projects that specifically aligned with my degree. My passions lie in holistic health and social and emotional wellbeing, so being a part of healthcare company meant a lot to me. It has shown me that Medibank is more than just a health insurance company.”
Jaz, Nakita, and first-year Medibank intern, Ardu, with Emily Wurramara, performer at the 2018 Medibank RAP launch.
Medibank, indeed, is more than a private health insurance company. It is a business that reaches out to the community and provides healthcare services with the aim of creating healthier and better lives for all Australians.
“I’m so proud of the services that Medibank offer. It shows that Medibank wants to build stronger, healthier relationships and create better lives within different communities, not just for our members,” says Nakita.
Jaz agrees, saying that as long as Medibank continues to strengthen its connection with different communities, great change will come.
“It really is about relationships, things happen faster and better in this world when good relationships exist. I know that for Indigenous people, change will come from organisations like Medibank. It’s about acknowledging that we are all the same and everyone deserves healthcare one way or another.”
As for what advice they have for future Medibank interns, Jaz and Nakita both agree that it’s about being open to all possibilities.
“Just try anything,” says Jaz. “Be passionate about anything and everything because there will always be something that you’ll love. As soon as you find it, hold on to it.”
“Take this opportunity while you can because chances like these don’t always happen to Indigenous people. Don’t be shy, voice your opinions and if you don’t understand something, just ask!” echoes Nakita.
Now that their internships with Medibank have come to an end, they are both continuing their studies. Nakita is focusing on a Bachelor of Health Science (in Applied Health Promotion), and Jaz is studying Arts, majoring in Indigenous studies, and political and international science.