Mafwizo Mwanangombe Brooker answers Ten Questions


Mafwizo Mwanangombe Brooker was born in 1973 and completed her undergraduate studies at The University of Zambia. She has worked at LICEF and Lake Road schools in Lusaka, Zambia and currently lives in Papua New Guinea where she’s a volunteer for Buk Bilong Pikinini, a charity that addresses literacy amongst PNG’s disadvantaged children.

1. When were you in the ESW?
Very recently – 2008-2009!

2. What degree/s did you complete?
I completed the Master of International Education. It really appealed to the work I’ve done in the past in terms of contextualizing and augmenting my research and experience and gives me a new insight into my current role.

3. Was there something in particular that attracted you to this course of study?
The most attractive aspect is that I could study online from Papua New Guinea where I live and work. And, very importantly, the University of Sydney ranked highly on the world and Australian rankings of universities – its international reputation appealed.

4. In what way did you use your ESW degree?
I used it to open my understanding of trends in education at global level.

5. What’s your current role?
I am a voluntary worker with Buk Bilong Pikinini, an organization here in Papua New Guinea that runs children's libraries in poor settlement areas. We’re helping to improve literacy amongst PNG’s disadvantaged children and we’ve just opened our eighth library.

6. How did your studies in the Faculty inform your current position?
Having conducted independent research here in Papua New Guinea I got to understand and see for myself the challenges facing the provision of education in a developing country.

7. Do you have fond memories of your time on campus at ESW?
While I wasn’t ‘present’ on campus, I felt that I ‘belonged’ to the Faculty. I was well-supported and continue to feel a connection now that I’m a member of its alumni & friends cohort.

8. Were you involved in extra-curricular activities either within or outside the Faculty?
The work that I currently do continued while I studied which meant that I could directly relate what I was researching and learning to the Buk Bilong Pininini.

9. How significant is it to you to be part of the Faculty’s alumni & friends group?
I feel like I’m a member of a prestigious organization and that I’ll have this ‘link’ for life – it’s great to keep up with what’s going on through the website and other e-communications. I hope to be in Sydney soon for a visit!

10. And finally, any words of wisdom you’d like to pass on to the ESW alumni & friends?
Never underestimate the contribution you can make as an individual. Put together, all our small contributions do amount to something worthwhile.