For Monica Gasparotto, Strathfield College’s Regional Recruitment Manager for Europe, finding common ground with students from Europe is her forte.
“I have never been a student in Australia, but I can relate with our international students especially in the challenges that they face, living in a new country with a different culture and coming from the same European background where English is not our spoken language,” she points out.
Monica believes that international students can enjoy their studies and have a great student experience. “Here at Strathfield, every student counts. We assist them with their enquiries and introduce them to a variety of learning experiences. They will never be just a student number,” she clarifies.
Monica studied Media and Cinema production in Italy, her home country, and had been working in the industry for a while before she decided to relocate to Australia in 2014. It is here where she discovered her knack for Marketing when she started out as a career professional in the education industry.
Career opportunity in Australia
In 2016, an opportunity to join a big education agency opened up to her and from that moment on, her career in international education began to take shape. When asked why she moved into the international education sector, she explains: “I decided to move to the education provider’s side to be able to develop further my marketing skills and improve my career.”
Monica describes herself as an energetic person, always mindful of her priorities both in her professional and personal life. “I always try to be focused on my goals and find time to enjoy my life at the same time. I always try to find the perfect balance,” she says.
Monica describes her day as always busy but never the same every day. “Some days are calm and some days I feel like I’m in the middle of a storm. Every student case can be different and each potential student may need a different level of support in preparing the application documents. I just need to find the right approach case by case.”
Networking with education counsellors
As a professional, Monica says that she has learned to always be prepared. She studies every student being referred to her by education agents and strives to understand the student’s priorities. She deals with education agents who have different requirements every day and internal departments within Strathfield College which also have different priorities and requirements. “I have to say that the joy comes when I am able to satisfy everyone’s needs and get the desired result for both sides,” she volunteers with a smile.
She adds, “My agents can see the results of what we are all building here at Strathfield. There is no need for propaganda. The best thing to do is to show that we are always available to help them and get things done, month by month, intake by intake. We need to show them that their trust has been placed in the right spot.”
Hobbies, interests and stress relievers
Monica shares that she’s passionate about travel. “I have been to several places around the world, and every time was a unique and great experience.” When she turned 19, she left her home country to live in Greece for four months and the year after in Cyprus for another four months. “From this experience, I started to learn Greek and I have discovered an amazing and ancient culture made by great individuals,” she adds.
She has since then traveled a lot in Europe and in Africa for holidays. She finally decided on going to Australia where “I had the chance to visit some incredible landscapes.”
Her other engrossing hobby is playing golf every chance she gets. “As a non-professional, I like to practice that for fun.” Otherwise, to relieve the day-to-day stresses of her job, she goes to the gym on a regular basis. “It really helps to get my stress out and keep my mind relaxed,” she relates.
Monica is quick to clarify though that she really enjoys her job. “I have always enjoyed interacting with people, solving issues and managing things. I used to ask myself if there was a job that was allowing me to do that. These days, I don’t really notice if I reply to an email at 9:00 pm or even on a Sunday because I love what I am doing. I am proud of myself when something I did looks great.”