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Staff profile: Anthea Lang

Anthea Lang has just retired and will be dearly missed by staff and students. Anthea has been at Curtin since 1978, and has made a wonderful contribution to the school over many years. Although Anthea can barely recall why she chose to study OT, she has no doubt she made the right decision! As she heads towards a relaxing retirement, Anthea reflects on her time at Curtin.

Anthea Lang recently retired after many years with the school.
Anthea Lang recently retired after many years with the school.

Name: Anthea Lang.

Title: Well maybe I would like to be called Lady Lang.

School: School of Occupational Therapy and Social Work.

Campus: Bentley.

How long did you work at Curtin?

On and off since 1978 (last century!).

Where did you work prior to starting at the University?

It depends which time! Maybe we could go with Royal Perth Hospital when Freda Jacob was in charge. I held a position that was partly funded by the hospital, and partly by Curtin. I was a senior in Neurology and oversaw the student fieldwork in the hospital. When the students weren’t on placement, I did some lecturing and tutoring. I then had time out to have my family, and started working at the University again as a regional fieldwork coordinator.

What did you like best about your most recent role in the Learning Resource Centre?

I really liked the autonomy of not having a boss as such, so that I could get on and develop and run the Learning Resource Centre as I saw fit. Of course I could only do this because I had such great support from Head of School Angus Buchanan.

Why did you choose occupational therapy as a career?

Well, it was a long time ago and I can hardly remember, but I do know that I have never regretted my choice. I love working with people, I love enabling people and I love seeing them grow and develop. This is true for both clients and students.

First job?

Selling handbags at David Jones in the Christmas holidays.

Worst job?

De-heading reject raw prawns at a prawning factory in Carnarvon.

Your favourite place in the world and why?

Home, because that is where all the people I love are.

Your favourite cuisine and why?

Many, but I really like good home cooked meals, with the proviso that they are not repetitive and boring. I like trying new recipes and will often try two or three a week. My favourite cook is Belinda Jeffrey.

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

A mistake is never really a mistake until you decide not to correct it.

Tell us something about yourself that your colleagues never knew…

Well, nothing saucy, as I am such a goodie two shoes…but in my first job as an OT one of the psychiatrists came swanning into the department, dropped his suit coat on the table and announced it needed a button sewn on. I was incensed! I was going to sew it on with purple thread, but I resisted. Instead I turned back the cuffs and sewed the sleeve lining together with my smallest stitches (pretty small, I got a sewing prize at school). He didn’t ever bother us again with random requests.