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ASC grant helps broaden skills and create opportunities

06 September 2023

Having begun her career as an athlete and working through health science and sports management, Djoeke Hoedemaker says a Women Leaders in Sport grant has given her even more skills to further her career in the sector.

Djoeke Hodemaker's career has seen her work as an athlete, health scientist, sports manager and administrator in sports such as alpine skiing, Australian football, badminton and golf.

Ms Hoedemaker used her grant to complete a course on ‘creating high performance teams’ with the Australian HR Institute.

Managed by the Australian Sports Commission, the WLIS Individual Grant program is designed to help women access professional development opportunities, develop specialist skills and enhance existing skills.

Ms Hoedemaker said the course gave her some tools to use when working in diverse work groups and how to handle difficult conversations and situations.

“It has also helped create fantastic professional connections with other women in all varieties of professional sport and high-quality applicable tools to use for the rest of my career in sport, and in life,” she said.

Ms Hoedemaker began her sporting career as an athlete in alpine skiing, representing Australia as a teenager in several international events. From those early days she knew she wanted to work in sport.

She studied a Bachelor of Health Science in Clinical Myotherapy and started work with the Melbourne Football Club. This work inspired a move to sports management, and while studying an MBA in Sports Management with Torrens University, she took an opportunity to work as football operations manager for Melbourne’s AFLW team.

From there she began work with Badminton Australia in high performance support.

“I learnt a great deal about the national sporting organisation environment and gained a whole new perspective around what is involved, particularly in a small national sport,” she said.

“Now I’m very happy to say I have a fantastic new role with Golf Australia as their High Performance Operations Coordinator that I began in July of this year and am loving every minute of it.”

Ms Hoedemaker said she enjoyed the flexibility and growth opportunities of working in the sport sector, while helping athletes achieve their dreams.

“I love working in sport and being able to support athletes and teams to be the best version of themselves,” she said.  “I also have a great drive to keep representing women in high performance sports as women tend to drop out for various reasons – hopefully we can keep growing women’s presence in sport long-term.”

Ms Hoedemaker encouraged other women to look into the WLIS program and think about how it can further their own careers in sport. She said the network of women leaders was very supportive.

“We all want to help each other grow and succeed in sport, WLIS is a fantastic program to be part of,” she said.

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