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It’s All About Chemistry - feature image, used as a supportive image and isn't important to understand article

Carol and I would both love to thank the NYSF for showing us the diversity and excitement that a science career can involve – and of course, for bringing us together! 

The NYSF Year 12 Program is great for many reasons, but one that most alumni point out is its ability to bring people together from around Australia to form lasting friendships, and on this occasion even more. Nathan tells the story below, how he met his now wife Carol.

"Carol and I met at the NYSF 2013 Year 12 Program – I was from Albury, while Carol was from Sydney, and we found ourselves in the same chemistry interest group. Our first conversation was on one of the buses to a group excursion, where Carol laughed at my music taste – a great first impression I’m sure!

I remember what a wonderful feeling it was to have found so many new friends who all shared the same interests, from all around Australia. We both found the NYSF such an enriching and eye-opening experience for our future careers, as well as building strong friendships. Despite going back to our hometowns on nearly opposite sides of NSW, Carol and I stayed in touch and started dating soon after!


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The NYSF showed me all the great study opportunities at the Australian National University, so I decided to move to Canberra where I did my Bachelor of Science, with majors in Water Science and Geography. Carol was also inspired to keep learning about Chemistry, completing a Bachelor of Science (Advanced) at the University of Sydney.

University was such a unique experience – we both changed majors and subjects several times before settling on what felt like the perfect fit! Flexibility was one of the best parts of studying a science degree – you can explore your interests in other fields of study and really broaden your career horizons. For me, completing field trips to Vietnam and local regions inspired my passion for the environment, where I loved both the hands-on field work as well as the policy and management side.

For Carol, she had the opportunity to spend a year in between second and third year working as a forensic scientist, through the USYD Year-in-Industry program for chemistry students. This gave her a hands-on taste of what being a chemist would be like, and she went into third year deciding to supplement her chemistry major with extra subjects in innovation design.

Fast forward to 2018, where I had moved to Sydney, Carol and I were finally living in the same city, and we got engaged! Then after six wonderful years together, in March 2019 Carol and I were married – finally! It was the most beautiful day we could have imagined.

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I’m now working as an environmental consultant with the Department of Defence, and Carol is completing her PhD where she’s exploring the role that design can play as a catalyst for science innovation. Our career paths are quite different to what we expected, but we are both very thankful for the opportunities we have had, including the NYSF all those years ago.

Carol and I would both love to thank the NYSF for showing us the diversity and excitement that a science career can involve – and of course, for bringing us together!"

Applications are now open for the NYSF 2020 Year 12 Program.  Students currently studying in Year 11 have until May 31 2019 to apply.  To find out more or to apply click HERE