Staff Spotlight: Patrick Foley-Donoghue

Mobility Officer


Patrick is passionate about education, sports and travel, and was born in Tasmania. Since turning 18, he has traveled extensively, and hopes that others will do the same.

At the beginning of this year, Patrick started working for the University of Tasmania in the area of Study Abroad & Exchange. Having been an exchange student whilst studying at UTAS, he has a robust understanding of the process and it's benefits.

When he's not organizing travel for himself or others, he likes to read & run long distances (but not at the same time).

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favourite travel memory is going to Barcelona and getting dressed up for Halloween. My friends and I wore skimpy shorts, fake mustaches and afro wigs (not so scary).

It was an outrageous party where I forged some close friendships and learned that life is really what you make it, and the more people you include in the fun, the better.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I have changed and grown in many respects - all (hopefully) positive.

Working for the University of Tasmania means that you are part of a large community and workforce. Seeing my efforts and their long term effects is inspiring. I often find myself working with different people and systems, which means new knowledge and skills for helping others find answers and organize themselves.

This means I'm constantly challenged to improve, meet deadlines and answer difficult questions. So it's in this respect have I have seen myself change and grow from strength to strength.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I remember speaking to a student about his time overseas recently -

He was telling me that he was scouted by a modelling company while he was on semester break in the Mediterranean (travelling from Italy to Croatia).

He explained that he'd been approached by a guy and asked in broken English if he would be willing to help him with a scene in his ad. The student was hesitant and suspicious but agreed - all he needed to do was stand on rails at the front of a yacht and dive head first into the water.

When the day of the shoot came around, he performed the dive, but as he resurfaced, he was run over by a speed boat, the propellor knicked his leg and he was rushed to the hospital with minor wounds.

The outcome was the "near-miss" and the "best story" came in the original re-telling. But there you have it - Don't forget to look before you jump in the deep end.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I would go on a short term program to a French speaking country.
Perhaps New-Caledonia?

With that said, I would happily go on exchange again.
There is no experience quite like an overseas program that combines education and travel. Its a brilliant justification for the question: "why are you here?", when you say "I'm here at XYZ University to learn. I chose to be here because they are the best in the world at what they do".

I think this added sense of purpose is very important and it provides a rich avenue to meet like-minded people, over a longer stretch of time.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

My team is the best. We are a diverse group that care about one-another and often go beyond the call of duty. The Boss is firm but fair, and my two colleague are really well suited to the work we undertake daily.

I think UTAS has a range of personalities and a very capable workforce. I enjoy working together for a larger purpose in the realms of Experience, Education and New Knowledge.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

I think the biggest factor for success comes down to the basics of planning, organizing, leading and controlling.

This means:
1 Knowing what you want to achieve.
2 Getting all the right people, with the right skills together.
3 Leading by example, working to the best of your ability and improving.
4 Executing the required task(s), adding to yourself, teaching others and benefiting the wider community.