en-us Inspired by Yarra

Emily Tunks Macvean

YOG 1997

Health Psychologist

"My Yarra friends and I catch up every few months and we're still supporting each other."

“One of the first things I noticed when I came to this school was an openness to being who you want to be. My time here gave me confidence to achieve and I loved that the teachers saw the potential in every student,” remembers Emily.

She was one of the first cohort of girls to join Yarra Valley Grammar in Year 10 - one of about 16 girls and 110 boys in the 1995 intake. And she was impatient to join the School after seeing her older sister Rebekah flourish.

“Our family all noticed a shift in my sister - she grew exponentially, and I wanted that energy that I saw in her,” says Emily.

Emily arrived at the school intent on pursuing the visual arts program but then steered towards science, particularly psychology, which became her career.

A Doctor of Psychology, she spent 10 years in the public health system in hospitals, pain management, drug and alcohol communities and in an HIV unit. She now has her own health psychology practice, Embody Psychology.

“As I got more experience, I wanted to tailor how I work with clients,” she says.

“It’s rewarding to work on their barriers and resistance to treatment. I also enjoy working with groups who can identify with someone’s struggle and how they’ve got through.”

Emily was a School Captain and remembers trembling in assemblies when she had to speak in front of a 1000-strong audience.

“I was terrified of failing and not being good enough and now I see how limiting and exhausting that was,” she says.

"But the Yarra Spirit was incredible because different year levels supported each other, and everyone was seen as being worthy."

 

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