My Melbourne with Nick Swan

June 14 / 139

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Hello and welcome to My Melbourne. I’m Stuart Winthrope. Today I’ll be talking to Nick Swan. Nick, welcome.

Thank you Stuart.

What is your job at the University?

My official title is Furniture Reuse Program officer.

What does that involve?

In a nutshell, unloved furniture or disused furniture from different departments finds new homes. So if one department’s finished with one area and another department has a requirement for various items of furniture or equipment, they can find it via a centralised website.

How long have you been doing that for at the University?

I’ve been at the University since the beginning of January, starting with Campus Assist, and then this role came up. I applied for it and was successful and I’ve been doing it since.

Do you have any events or sales promotions that you want to talk about?

Outside departments using the store and the program, we do have a staff and student sale program that we run. We have usually been running it once a month, and now we’re looking to run that every Wednesday between 3pm and 6pm, so everyone knows it’s once a week and more importantly so people can pick up their purchases between 3pm and 6pm every week, so once a week they can purchase and pick up as well.

Excellent, so where is that held?

At the moment it’s at 11-15 Argyle Place South in Carlton.

Every Wednesday afternoon, 3pm to 6pm.

Indeed, I’ll be there.

You’ve been here since January – what have you found is your favourite thing about working for the University?

I think the diversity of people is really interesting. Obviously there are a lot of people that work here – a lot of academics and educators and so on, and the people that work here are fantastic. Of all the places I’ve worked, that’s the most appealing thing I think, about this sort of environment.

And have you found a favourite place to get food and coffee around the campus?

I have, it’s a little café down on the ground floor of the Alice Hoy building – Shanti Bhagwan is the name. It overlooks that little courtyard and the lawn and it’s a fantastic little place for coffees and bites to eat.

Have you gotten any advice since you came to the campus that you think is worth passing on?

I got told this thing that sticks in my head: no matter what we do here, that is the staff, at the end of the day it’s all about the students, it’s all about the school. And that is the whole point, the purpose of what we do. So that’s at the core of what we have to remember, why we are here, and I think that’s very important to remember. I’d pass that on to anyone coming – remember, at the end of the day it’s about the students, it’s about the education. 

Is there anything that your colleagues might not know about you that you would like to pass on, that you would be happy to share with us? 

I think that we let out as much as we’d like to about ourselves in our work environment, but one thing that people probably wouldn’t know is that over the last 20 years or so I’m a veteran of about 1,500 gigs as a musician. 

What do you play?

Guitar and singer, anything from solo to a four- or five-piece band. At one stage I was playing three to four nights, five nights a week. Not now, I’m currently on hiatus, but I did do that, so I have an interest – mainly as a part-time thing, but a very full-on part-time thing.

You’re a veteran then?

I am now. If you think about it over a 20-year period, I’m now a veteran.

Excellent, thank you for coming in.

Thank you for having me, terrific.

Thank you for joining us I’m Stuart Winthrope and this has been My Melbourne.

More information about the Furniture and Equipment Re-use Store can be found on its website.

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