La Trobe supports women to lead on

Six female Bendigo students have been awarded the first ever Regional Women in Leadership bursaries.

Danica Lang

Danica Lang knows a thing or two about balance and flexibility; in sport and in life. She’s spent the last four years juggling various big commitments, while studying physiotherapy at La Trobe University’s Bendigo Campus.

This month Danica was one of six female students recognised for their inspiring lives. Each received a $1000 Regional Women in Leadership Bursary to support their community work.

Danica uses her physio skills as a sports trainer with the Castlemaine Football Club, plus coaches the Bendigo Calisthenics Club’s three-to-seven year olds, plus competes herself.

“It’s been a lot of balancing,” she says. “But it’s really important for me to keep it all going. It’s definitely a big priority for me. Having an outlet like Calisthenics got me through year 12, and then university. I think it’s important to have something that gives you a break from study.”

The leadership bursary rewards women for their leadership work in the face of educational disadvantage, such as financial hardship, caring responsibilities, having a non-English speaking background or living in a rural or regional area.

Funds are raised from ticket sales to Regional Women in Leadership Forums. The first forum took place in April this year at the Capital Theatre, where more than $6000 was raised to launch the initiative. The bursaries will support women to achieve their leadership goals.

“Calisthenics Victoria offers lots of professional development courses, so I’d like to put the money towards going to some of those and expanding my skills,” Danica says.

“Most people don’t know what calisthenics is. It’s a combination of gymnastics, ballet, singing and acting. It’s really a dance-based sport. It is a growing sport, but I’d like to see more awareness for it in country Victoria.”

Danica says coaching development will help with next year’s task to coach the 12-15 year olds. And she’ll be balancing that with a new job at Physiotherapy Centre Bendigo.

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