Alumni in profile

Image of Anne Tan with husband and helicopter pilot

Anne Tan
Staff member 1988-2003
Victoria College and Deakin University

I’ve recently…
Travelled with my husband (pictured right) to Lake Eyre to see the water coming down after flooding in Queensland. Currently the lake has about 60 per cent coverage with the Warburton Groove flowing, the Diamantina in minor flood at Birdsville and the overall cover looking good from the air. After driving via Mildura, Burra, Hawker to Marree, we stopped at the historic Marree Great Northern Hotel in preparation for our helicopter flight over Lake Eyre.

Marree marks the start of both the Birdsville and the Oodnadatta Tracks and at this time of the year (April-May) travellers are beginning to move through these routes keeping a keen eye on outback road closures and detours around wet areas.

Marree was originally the change of gauge station for the Ghan railway and several decommissioned locomotives stand on the tracks which run down the main street of Marree. (The present Ghan rail line is now situated to the west and the last train from Marree to Oodnadatta ran in December 1980). Dotted around the town are reminders of the Afghan cameleers who were so important in the early exploration of this area.

The highlight of my trip was…
A two hour helicopter flight over Lake Eyre taking in the Warburton Groove, Belt Bay, Madigan Gulf and Lake Eyre South. Our pilot, Steve, ensured we had excellent views and his knowledgeable commentary added to the experience. He made sure we saw the pelican flocks, the dingo fence, the camel tracks and the salt pans where British speed ace Donald Campbell fired up his Bluebird in July 1964.

A large part of our flight was at 500 feet so the views were superb. Although you felt as though you were hardly moving, a glance down revealed the tiny helicopter shadow darting across the landscape.

I’m currently…
A retired Deakin academic. I retired in 2003, after 15 years teaching at Deakin and its antecedent institution Victoria College primarily in arts.

Working at Victoria College and Deakin was …
An exciting, stimulating and satisfying period in my life. I really enjoyed working with tertiary students and sharing their learning. There was such diversity in the student population...from exit Year 12 students to mature age students, including even an eighty-year young person!

Some special moments in my life are…
Spending time with friends and family, travel, gardening and delving into books.

Today I am motivated by…
Commitment to family.

Success to me is...
Being able to contribute to and participate in the community.

The single-most important issue in the world is...
Ensuring we have a habitable planet.

In the future I’d like to…
Continue to see as much of Australia as I can.


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Deakin University acknowledges the traditional land owners of present campus sites.

4th June 2010