Project officer

Nicola Wright completed a Master of Arts in History and is now working as a Project Officer in the Native Title Unit at the Department of Justice and Regulation in Victoria, Australia.

Key facts

Career: Project officer
Programme: Master of Arts
Subject: History

“My role as a Project Officer in the Native Title Unit is to represent the Victorian Government in land settlement negotiations with traditional owners, to provide advice and reports on issues in native title, land justice, and related areas, and to undertake tasks to achieve the implementation of settlements reached in Victoria.

“Prior to this role I was a Strategic Projects Analyst at the Department of Conservation in Auckland and a Negotiations Analyst with the Office of Treaty Settlements in Wellington. I was privileged to be involved in the Whanganui River negotiations – New Zealand’s longest running litigation – and attending the ceremony to sign the Deed of Settlement at Rānana Marae has been the most memorable moment in my working career.

“I decided to study History in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Auckland because I wanted an internationally-recognised qualification. This is a decision I will be forever grateful for because it’s given me many transferable skills that are directly relevant to my working life. The ability to understand and work with people from different backgrounds and cultures means that I can relate to Victorian traditional owners in my current job with ease.

“Completing postgraduate study has equipped me with the skills and confidence to negotiate settlements, to brief State Ministers and to write aide-mémoires, speaking notes, Cabinet papers and other reports on behalf of my department. Postgraduate study also taught me to be disciplined with my time, something that is hugely important in my job as I work on multiple projects with competing deadlines.

“My lecturers and supervisor were wonderful and the community of postgraduate students in History were like family to me. I have left the Faculty of Arts with lifelong friends and a world-class education – and I feel extremely lucky.”