Zoe Strapp graduated in 2015 with a Bachelor of Environmental Science (Wildlife Conservation Biology). She has now combined her passion for swimwear and marine environment conservation to create her own brand- Akua Oceanwear.
Tell us about your current role – what does a typical day look like for you?
I am certainly more of a morning person than night, so my day usually starts around 6am, if the surf is good I am out there by sunrise, if not I might take a walk. I then work through my emails, eat a massive breakfast and get into it. Every day is different for me, that is why I love it. From designing, communicating with customers, content creation and my online marketing. Creating a platform for your brand is never ending, it is hard for sure but every day is new and limitless, that is why it is so exciting!
What is the best/most rewarding part of your job?
Receiving heart filled responses from my Akua customers and sharing exciting moments they have experienced in there new Akua Oceanwear, from a girls surf day, to diving or just dreaming about their next trip. There’s nothing more rewarding that sharing your passion with others and as a business owner, on such personal basis.
What were some of the memorable experiences you had at Deakin? i.e. social, academic, intellectual.
Deakin is a truly wonderful university. I enjoyed each and every part of my experience at Deakin, from days spent in the library, surrounded by friends and good coffee, to three years in a row at the Enviro ball and of course my lectures. With a team of lecturers, from what I have heard from friends at other universities, were the most caring and knowledgeable lecturers in the industry. The most memorable times though would have to be the camps I undertook, all over Victoria. From Cape Conran, the Grampians and the Otways, it was an amazing way to learn, generate true friends and experience my field of interest first hand. Moments I will never forget were built on those camps.
Did you learn anything from your Deakin studies to take directly to the workforce?
I think, aside from all the informative content and industry relevant knowledge that I developed at Deakin. The ability to apply myself, work within a team, even when you may not want to and produce high quality well-constructed reports, is skill I feel can be applied to any career path. Even to running your own business.
What are your career highlights?
Opening Akua Oceanwear to the public and receiving my first order. This is more than a business to me, it’s an opportunity to share what I love, with women worldwide and make a difference to marine environment at the same time. The support and excitement I have already experienced from surfer girls, marine scientists, diver, travel lovers, older and younger women, has been amazing. Akua is a brand that represents bringing everyone together and sharing the endless adventures and summer days that inspire our love for the ocean and passion to protect it. That is certainly the highlight of my career… so far.