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‘I hope students realise how lucky they are to be there’

By Kimberley Price

MAUREEN Oliver cannot speak highly enough of Rochester Secondary College – a place that saw her through her high school education and where she has just ended her career after 34 years as business manager.

Born and bred in Rochester, Maureen attended Rochester High School, as it was known. After completing her education, Maureen worked at Northern Timber & Hardware for three years in an administration role. In this position, she learnt and performed a range of duties that would later prove useful in her role as business manager.

After leaving her job at Northern Timber & Hardware to marry Greg Oliver and have their two children Damian and Lauren, and once the children were at primary school, there was an advertisement in the local paper for a position at Rochester High School. Maureen applied and was successful, and the rest, as they say, is history.

“I just loved it,” Maureen said.

“I had studied accountancy at school and I found it enjoyable and challenging.

“I really enjoyed the work and that’s why I stayed there so long.

“I was able to mingle with staff and students and I still got school holidays to spend with my family.

“It’s a fantastic school.

“And I hope the students now realise how lucky they are to be there.”

Throughout her career, Maureen saw a lot of changes flow through the school doors. Primarily, the name change to Rochester Secondary College and the implementation of new technology.

“When I first started, there was only myself and another part-time worker in the office,” Maureen said.

“This has increased to three administration staff over time.

“We used to have a big ledger book where we would have to add everything up manually.

“There wasn’t even a computer in the school.

“It’s amazing how things have changed.”

Having retired from Rochester Secondary College in the middle of the year, Maureen has had some time to rest and is now looking forward to her new adventures – although she looks back very fondly on her time at the school.

“We have five grandchildren who live in Bendigo and Sunbury so Greg and I are looking forward to being able to perform even more grandparent duties with them,” she said.

“Hopefully we can do a few trips here and there, but we’re just in the planning stages at the moment.

“There are plenty of things to keep me busy here.

“I had a great time and career at the school.

“During my career I learnt to work with a whole range of different people – staff, students and parents – and hopefully managed to support the school in this area.

“In my job I’ve been able to work with people and know the differences we may have and relate to them.

“I’ve definitely learnt to prioritise throughout my role.

“My daughter once said to me that I’m so lucky to have a job I love – and she was right, it was the best.

“I believe that if you love your job, you’ll be happy.

“And I certainly was.”