Veteran Employee of the Year

Driven by a desire to serve his nation, Aaron joined the Australian Army at the age of 19. He enlisted as a Combat Engineer and spent his career posted to 3rd Combat Engineer Regiment in Townsville. In 2011, Aaron was deployed to Afghanistan as part of Mentoring Task Force 3. He served as a high-risk searcher. Despite the danger and hardship of serving in a combat zone, this was the highlight of Aaron’s military career.

In 2012, after five years in the Army, Aaron transitioned from the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and began working in the fitness industry. He ran his own business for several years before moving on to manage a gym franchise while seeking the same sense of purpose and meaning to life that he felt during his time in the Army.

The ADF instilled in Aaron the value of continual education and he spent much of his time completing certificates and diplomas. Although he had never aspired to attend university, Aaron decided to apply and was accepted to the Australian Catholic University (ACU). To his surprise, he found that university gave him the sense of purpose and meaning that he had been searching for. During his final year of university, Aaron had the opportunity to complete a placement in Timor-Leste, where he delivered exercise education packages to schools in the Bhachau province. This experience inspired him to become a volunteer Scout leader and youth mentor upon his return to Australia. He was later involved in the Kicking Goals Together Youth Program, a job skills education program and soccer tournament for youth from refugee and migrant backgrounds.

Aaron graduated in 2019 and has continued on to complete a Graduate Certificate in Clinical Exercise Rehabilitation. He is now studying a Master in Business Administration at ACU. Aaron has been working in the ACU Student Veteran Services, firstly as a Support Worker and now as Student Veteran Services Manager. In this role Aaron found his passion for supporting his peers and breaking down the barriers to higher education. He is committed to building supportive environments where students thrive in tertiary education, recognising the potential to translate skills from the ADF into an academic setting.  He is driven to support the veteran community by increasing access to meaningful employment and making a real impact.

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