From your first contact with CISaustralia, you will find someone truly interested in assisting you – it’s what we are here for and what we believe in.
Our management team and Australian-based staff will work with you until you depart on your adventure. Our overseas staff, based in our host destinations throughout the world, offer a personal and supportive ‘on the ground’ contact. No matter the issue, you will have someone available to talk to. Our on-site support staff are there to help you with emergencies, issues or concerns around your program. Even if you’re simply looking for an activity or dining recommendation, they are always eager to share their advice and opinions!
Brad Dorahy – Founder and Executive Director
Brad is passionate about international education and travel. After graduating from the University of Newcastle, where he was also awarded a cultural scholarship and coordinated the second ‘Cultural Awakenings Festival’, Brad travelled the world and has since visited 60+ countries, including:
United States of America (all fifty states), Canada, Mexico, Belize, Peru, Costa Rica, Chile, India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Brunei, Myanmar, Peoples Republic of China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau, Indonesia, Philippines, Fiji, New Caledonia, Cambodia, UAE, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Mauritius, South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya, Reunion, Russia, Turkey, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Germany, France, Spain, England, Italy, Czech Republic, Ireland, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, Portugal, Scotland, Andorra, Gibraltar, Vatican City, New Zealand and PNG.
Brad has been involved in international education for 25 years, and has lived, studied, volunteered and worked abroad. Brad has worked at a number of Australian Universities (The University of Newcastle, Bond University and Navitas at Griffith University), and for international companies in Korea, China and the US. Brad studied abroad at the University of Canterbury – NZ and Harvard University – USA, has attended the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) Course and is an active AICD member, has volunteered in the Philippines and has been an active volunteer with Surf Life Saving Queensland for 8+ years. He loves the outdoors and hiking, has completed the Australian Ironman, hiked Kokoda and to Base Camp Mt. Everest. Brad is on the reference group for the EPITOME Research Project (Enhancing Programmes Integrating Tertiary Outbound Mobility Experiences) and has presented at international conferences such as NAFSA, ISANA, the Mobility Forum, AIEC and CCIS and now lives on the Gold Coast, Australia. LinkedIn profile available here.
Jeff Palm – Co-Founder
Jeff holds a BA degree in Biology from the College of Saint Scholastica (MN) and an MA in Management from Hawaii Pacific University. Jeff’s international experiences include working in Europe, Asia and Africa during his tenure as Associate Director of International Admissions at Hawaii Pacific University, specifically within international program development in Europe and Australasia. In business and “pleasure” Jeff has traveled to more than 30 countries. Jeff established CIS in the US in 1999 and has co-founded CIS in Australia with Brad. Jeff and Brad have been colleagues and good friends since the late 90s. Jeff is primarily responsible for managing the strategic direction of CIS in the US. CIS USA sends approx. 2,000 students overseas a year and sends American students to many of the same programs as CIS in Australia. Outside of the office, Jeff keeps busy hiking, snowshoeing, playing basketball, surfing (only in warm water) and spending as much time as he can with his wife, sons and dog.
Alison Price – Manager, University Relations
Having spent most of her life on the Gold Coast, Alison completed her Bachelor of Business (Management) and Bachelor of Communication (Media) at Bond University. After graduating, Alison moved to Canberra to work in Management Consulting where her clients were some of Australia’s largest government public service departments. This experience enabled her to work on large-scale projects with a significant impact towards the protection of Australia’s borders. She eventually moved back to the beautiful Gold Coast to pursue a career in the health industry. As a passionate health and fitness enthusiast, this gave her the opportunity to have a hands-on role in changing people’s lives from the inside out. Alison has since come on board to CISaustralia to continue to impact the lives of others through study and travel as she believes every university student should take advantage of the incredible opportunities and experiences that await them all around the world.
When she’s not wandering through the Gold Coast hinterland and beaches, Alison enjoys indulging at the local cafes, watching films, spending time with friends, drinking lots of tea, cooking, reading and planning her next overseas adventures! The countries already ticked off her list include America, New Zealand, Malaysia and Japan. The UK and Scotland are her next travel destinations!
Kristin Eberman – Manager, Marketing and Communications
Kristin is a native of Portland, Oregon, USA although has spent a majority of her adult years living overseas. Her passion for international travel began at 16 years old when she first spent a summer in France on a language and culture program, followed by a six-month study program in Ghana at the age of 17. She has since travelled to 51 countries on five continents. Kristin loves meeting people from all over the globe while experiencing new cultures and learning from other ways of life. She has also studied abroad in Prague, Czech Republic, volunteered in Moscow, Russia, and worked in Morocco (Peace Corps) and England (university student support services) before coming to Australia. She holds a Master of Arts degree in International Education and her favourite part of working in the field is getting to know students and helping them discover the joys of travel and the personal growth it brings.
Kristin’s favourite countries include: Scotland, Portugal, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Ghana, Turkey and Malta. Besides travelling, Kristin also enjoys spending time outdoors, rowing, playing soccer, cooking, photography, and doing arts and crafts.
Mariah Stellato – University Relations Representative (Melbourne)
Living in Victoria, Mariah has a passion for the environment resulting in her currently completing a Bachelor of Environmental Science at Deakin University. Mariah aspires to combine travel and work within the environmental field, with this interest stemming from the completion of the CISaustralia New Zealand volunteer program. Volunteering is a big passion of Mariah’s, working extensively across the Peninsula completing archaeological work and amongst Pacific Island communities dealing with the issues of climate change and environmental refugees. Number one on her bucket list is to complete an around the world trip visiting Europe, America and South America in one go. Mariah thoroughly enjoys the outdoors, being a self-proclaimed snow junkie, movie buff, music enthusiast and has a fine appreciation of a good brunch.
Lynette (Netti) Sillitoe – University Relations Representative (Queensland)
Born and raised in the small rural town of Maryborough, Netti moved to Brisbane to pursue her study of a Bachelor of Laws and Business at Griffith University. Having always had an interest in different cultures, Netti is currently learning Spanish and the Latin American way of life. She had always dreamed of travelling solo around the world and this dream was realised thanks to CISaustralia’s January in New York City, USA study abroad program where she studied International Economics. This experience allowed her to make lifelong friends and embrace a new culture first- hand. Netti appreciates the importance of sharing her experience and encouraging others to plunge themselves into a new culture and take advantage of the benefits it provides.
Netti has also travelled extensively across Asia and Europe and hopes to continue travelling through North and South America in the future. She also hopes to learn many more languages such as German and French. In her spare time, she enjoys Zumba, feeding her shameful addition to reality TV shows and enjoying a good coffee or two.
Netti is a firm believer that travel is the only thing you can buy that makes you richer!
Fandi Ji – University Relations Representative (Brisbane)
Fandi was born in China and came to Australia to enjoy the warm weather, beautiful nature and further her education by attending high school in Sydney. Later Fandi moved to Brisbane, Queensland where she now lives to complete her Bachelor of Commerce at the University of Queensland. Fandi has a bubbly personality, loves to travel and most importantly help people have the same international experiences she has had. Fandi also attended the CISaustralia January study program at UCLA as part of her UQ degree. The UCLA experience has helped Fandi broaden her horizons and build a range of different skills. Fandi is a qualified interpreter, is passionate about communications and marketing, and loves to experiences new cultures and make new friends. She cannot wait to assist new Australian and Chinese students interested in attending all CISaustralia programs.
Jane O’Keeffe – Manager, Customised Programs
Jane is CISaustralia’s Customised Faculty-Led Program Manager assisting University Central Administrators and Academic staff design, plan and manage their customised faculty led programs (study tours) – to incredible global destinations. Jane has a wealth of experience with over ten year’s in customer service, logistics and travel related industries. Jane has travelled to over twenty countries on five continents, her favourite destinations being Dubai, Rwanda, Turkey, India and Scotland.
Jane gained her logistical experience as a serving member of the Royal Australian Air Force. During this time Jane served on deployments to provide logistical support in Indonesia (after the 2004 Boxing Day Tsunami) and in the Middle East Area. Jane’s passion for international travel led her to a career in the travel industry, including several years as an International Travel Consultant for Flight Centre Ltd.
Joanne Newsome – Coordinator, Customised Programs
Joanne has over 20 years’ experience in customer service industries including travel, tourism, hospitality and retail. Joanne has varied experience working with the youth travel market including managing university branches of STA Travel, managing an arrival and support program for international working holiday visa holders coming to Australia as well as sending young Australians to either summer camp in the USA or working in the North American ski fields.
Her international adventures began many years ago with a working holiday to the UK followed by a 6-month trip through 42 states in the USA. Joanne has made many trips around the globe to amazing destinations covering over 20 countries on 5 continents. Favourite places include: Alaska, Mexico, China, Zimbabwe, France and Italy.
Joanne’s passion for learning about new countries and cultures continues and she believes every young person should have the opportunity to study, work and travel internationally. She has relocated to the Gold Coast from Sydney and is enjoying walking/hiking and exploring the many trails in the Southern Gold Coast region.
Charlene Zimmatore – Coordinator, Customised Programs
Charlene is Sydney born and bred, and spent many years living on the sunny Central Coast of NSW before relocating north of the border to the beautiful Gold Coast. She holds a Bachelor of Applied Science (Consumer Science) as well as a Bachelor of Teaching. Charlene has experience in the Food Industry, Customer Service, Community Education, Program Co-ordination and Special Needs Education, including multinational organisations, local government and within the education system.
Charlene is passionate about travel and the opportunities for personal growth it provides. She is a lifelong learner that loves experiencing other cultures and foods, aiming to immerse herself amongst the locals whenever she travels abroad.
Her first trip overseas was to Thailand on a University study tour. It was here she caught the “travel bug” and has made travel a big part of her life ever since. Charlene has lived abroad and has also visited over 30 countries across the world. She has recently returned from living in Spain with her husband and 3 children, where she made the most of the opportunity to immerse the family in the Spanish culture and travel extensively around Europe. Next on her bucket list is Africa and the Caribbean.
Emma Cao – Manager, Admissions and Enrolments
Emma holds a Bachelor of Communication (Journalism & Public Relations) from Bond University on the Gold Coast and joined CISaustralia in April 2016 as Manager of the Admissions & Enrolments Department. Prior to CISaustralia, Emma spent many years working in Event Management and Destination & Tourism Marketing. During her time in the tourism industry, Emma was awarded Young Achiever in Tourism and was a finalist in the NSW State Tourism Awards for Destination Marketing.
Emma has visited over 30+ countries. Some of her favourite destinations include Italy, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Oman, South Africa, Zanzibar and Zambia. Emma currently lives on the Southern Gold Coast and loves to surf whenever possible. She is an active volunteer with Surf Life Saving Queensland and enjoys hiking the World Heritage national parks of the Tweed Valley and Gold Coast Hinterland. Emma is also a qualified yoga teacher, completing her 200-Hour RYT in Bali, Indonesia.
Hannah Chong – Senior Coordinator, Admissions and Enrolments
Born and raised on the Gold Coast, Australia, Hannah graduated from the Queensland University of Technology with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Creative and Professional Writing). During her studies at university, her passion for travel reached an all-time high when she studied abroad in Québec, Canada for a semester at Bishop’s University. She’s been lucky enough to travel extensively through the US, Canada, southeast Asia, and New Zealand, and is continuously adding to that list!
Through her travels, Hannah has made friends in many different countries, which makes for a perfect excuse to go abroad! Next up: hopefully the UK and Europe for the first time, and more of the Americas (and Walt Disney World and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter for the nth time, of course!). Her personal Big 3 she hopes to get to soon are Iceland, Norway and Austria. Beyond overseas travel, Hannah enjoys reading, pilates, hiking, going to the cinema, musical theatre, spending time with friends and family, taking naps, and playing with her dog. She is excited to be a part of the CISaustralia team and loves to help students travel the world.
Chantelle Coward – Coordinator, Admissions and Enrolments
Originally from Brisbane but now settled on the Gold Coast, Chantelle completed her Bachelor of Business (Marketing) and Bachelor of Psychological Studies at Queensland University of Technology. Chantelle has a varied background in the telecommunications industry and has an unending passion for both education and travel.
Chantelle has lived in Canada for over a year and travelled to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia, Peru, Brazil, UAE, UK, The Netherlands, France and Germany. Her next priorities are Scotland, Central America and the beautiful national parks in the USA.
When not travelling, Chantelle enjoys hiking and road trips with her partner and dog, attending live music gigs, trivia nights and meeting friends and family members for food and drinks at the Gold Coast’s many amazing restaurants.
Oceane Branson – Coordinator, Admissions and Enrolments
Originally from New Zealand, Oceane immersed herself 10 years ago on the Gold Coast where she studied a Bachelor of Business In Convention and Event Management. While ticking her university degree off, Oceane recognised her passion for travel and was excited to broaden her horizons and partake in a study exchange to Canada where she continued her studies at Thompson Rivers University.
During her time abroad, Oceane was fortunate enough to travel around Canada and the US to places such as San Francisco, New York and Vancouver to name a few. Following her passion for adventure and experience abroad in Canada, Oceane went on to complete her degree through an Internship program in New Zealand being a program facilitator on outdoor expeditions which included hiking, kayaking and biking throughout the New Zealand Hinterland.
Oceane has since come on board with CISaustralia and is passionate about providing opportunities and amazing experiences for students, similar to the experiences she had abroad. Oceane has a passion for travel and has since travelled throughout Europe, America, Asia, Canada and New Zealand. Her next travel destinations will be Scotland, Mexico and South America. In her downtime, Oceane loves exploring the outdoors and is always up for a hike or extreme water sport activities, she enjoys practicing yoga, cooking, spending time with friends and family which usually involves eating at various amazing restaurants around the Gold Coast.
Jackie Chapman – Administrative Services Manager
Jackie has a passion for travel and international education having lived, travelled, worked and studied overseas. As an Australian undergraduate uni student, Jackie studied abroad at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. Upon her return from the US, Jackie kicked off her career in international education working at the International Office – the University of Newcastle. Since this time Jackie’s 16-year career has been predominantly based in international education, including a two year position in Denver, Colorado working for a leading study abroad provider then as their Australian on-site resident director for another three years. Jackie has worked in various marketing and management roles focused primarily on project management, large scale event organisation, sponsorship, new business launches and strategic planning.
Jackie holds a Masters in Communication (Corporate Communication) from Bond University, QLD and a Bachelor of Social Science (Recreation and Tourism) from Newcastle University, NSW. Her favourite countries include Finland, Vietnam, Japan, Nepal, New Zealand, USA, Malaysia and Norway. Jackie holds an Open Water Scuba certificate and enjoys yoga, running, hiking, family adventures and of course – travel!
Gretchen Lawrance – Finance Officer
Gretchen completed all her schooling on the Gold Coast and holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) from Griffith University on the Gold Coast. She has gained finance and accounting experience while working at KPMG, LandMark White Pty Ltd, Mantra Group and most recently, BuildingLink International.
Gretchen has travelled to England, Amsterdam, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, France, Singapore, Bali and South Africa. She looks forward to enjoying plenty of future travels with her family.
If you are interested in working or interning with us, please check out Careers at CISaustralia for open positions and how to register your interest.
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