Eleanor and Asha on Working at Sherdale Farm

September 08, 2017
By Jordan McNamara

We recently spoke to Asha Dilkes-Hoffman and Eleanor Percival both Masters students at University of Melbourne, about their experience with Paddl and working at Sherdale Farm.


Asha Dilkes-Hoffman

Master of Landscape Architecture - The University of Melbourne



Eleanor Percival

Master of Environment - The University of Melbourne 



What date did you start the role?
We started the role on 23 July.

How did you find out about this opportunity?
The opportunity was posted within the University of Melbourne Careers Online job portal. What drew our attention was that it was aimed directly at students, so we felt more confident about applying for a job within our experience level and also to an employer conscious of our study commitments. 

How easy did you find it to use Paddl? Eg: setting up your profile, applying for the job itself etc? Did you have any problems?
Paddl was easy to use, with a great interface - it felt like you were applying to an actual employer rather than an anonymous person. It was great to be able to click on the employer's profile to find out a bit more about them.

Between applying for the job and the actual time starting the role, were you satisfied with the communication you had with Paddl and the employer? Did you know everything you needed to, in enough time etc?
Communication between us and Paddl was excellent. The day after the application period closed, we were contacted (by phone) by a very friendly Paddl staff member who acted as a liaison between us and our employer before our first meeting. The conversation was relaxed and casual, giving us the opportunity to talk a little bit more about ourselves and why we applied for the job, and also to openly ask any questions we had.

Did you feel prepared when you went in and did you know everything you needed to?
We're definitely both still learning but the reassurance we get from our employer is very encouraging. The best part is that our employer understands our current experience level and is open to experimentation and assisting us to explore and learn freely. The information provided on the job ad, the employer profile and over the phone was comprehensive. We went in with some logistical questions about our work hours as we would be job sharing - our employer was really flexible and accommodating to our schedules.

Tell me about the experience so far. What was the experience like? Any standout memories?We've had a fantastic few weeks at Sherdale Farm. It's such a beautiful property and to be given the scope to make suggestions for its sustainable future is both daunting and exciting. In terms of a stand out memory so far, it would be seeing the difference a few days of hard work can make! Being able to visibly observe changes and improvements really does spur you onwards and boost your confidence.

Considering your career objectives & studies, do you think this experience was useful and be helpful in finding/securing a job after you graduate? Why?
Yes, definitely. As Masters students, it's been invaluable to get out and try different kinds of work which helps in narrowing down our career goals. Practical work like this can be hard to come by, particularly for university students who cannot work full time. In summary, having practical experience like this (that is paid too!) is brilliant. 

Will you use Paddl to find more experiences/jobs like this while you finish studying and after you graduate? Why?
Paddl will be an excellent resource in the future to look for more experiences. The short-term, flexible and student focussed positions are great for getting a taste of different jobs within your area of interest.

Connect with Asha on LinkedIn
Connect with Eleanor on LinkedIn