New Bendigo Hospital Project calls Emily home

The Bendigo Advertiser is continuing to publish a series of profiles on some of the people helping to build the new Bendigo Hospital.

EMILY Mudge jumped at the chance to play a part in the new Bendigo Hospital project.

The former Bendigo resident now lives in Melbourne but says Bendigo is always close to her heart.

Ms Mudge's mum and dad still live in Bendigo, she has friends and family who work at Bendigo Health and she wanted to help shape the future of healthcare in the region.

Ms Mudge, 33, has been employed by Lend Lease for nine years.

Ms Mudge has worked on projects around Australia and in India and Sri Lanka but when the new Bendigo Hospital project came up, she realised it was an opportunity not to be missed.

Ms Mudge is Lend Lease's project manager for the new Bendigo Hospital project.

"Being from Bendigo, it's hugely personal to me so I love the opportunity and it's great to be a part of it," Ms Mudge said.

"I worked on the Royal Children's Hospital and working on that was a big component of having health experience, having done something similar.

"But I was really motivated, being from Bendigo, to be a part of this.

"Certainly I take it personally having had family and friends who have worked on the wards and knowing they'll be getting a better facility that supports their work life.

"It's really exciting both personally and professionally - (as is) any project you learn a lot from, particularly one of this sort of scale and complexity."

Ms Mudge started working on the $630 million new Bendigo Hospital project almost two years ago.

"I was involved with preparation of the bid with Lend Lease and there was a couple of months gap waiting between issuing of the bid and then the best and final offer stage," she said.

"So I worked across both of those and then once we were awarded I came back shortly after and began working with the team."

Ms Mudge said each project came with its own set of challenges but the new hospital was progressing well.

"There's always lots of challenges but I think the main thing is working out what the best solution for the client is, representing that for the construction team, understanding what implications are - whether it be health planning costs, safety, time, quality and guiding the best decision and whether that direction comes from the users or something we're deciding ourselves," she said.

"It's just about putting the information together and using the resources of the consultants, the subcontractors, the experience within our own team, the users and the state - they're obviously experts within their own departments and areas.

"So it's about piecing that together and out of that, getting the best outcomes for the project and the clients."

Ms Mudge said it was exciting to be helping shape Bendigo's history and the future.

"I love the areas I'm working on," she said.

"They're familiar to me from my work on the Royal Children's Hospital project.

"The users are fantastic - they seem to have a real appreciation of the opportunity to represent the departments and put forward their interest and the interest of the patients.

"I love working with the sub contractors as well.

"I've had a little bit to do with them in preparing some of the prototype rooms.

"The intention there is to construct some of the rooms that have either high risk or high repetition so that the users can be in the space, feel it and understand how it works for their functional requirements.

"And it gives us an opportunity to capture those changes before we go and build the hospital so it saves sort of redoing it town the track.

"So subcontractors are hard working, down-to-earth people and it's great to be working with them as well."

Ms Mudge's resume includes work on the Gold Coast University Hospital and work in Canberra, Sydney, India and Sri Lanka.

"I've been lucky," she said.

"There have been some good opportunities."

Ms Mudge said working in Sri Lanka was a great experience.

"I mentioned the work in India," she said.

"Sri Lanka was different again, being less technical as a residential housing project but more specific in delivery being a reconstruction project after the 2004 tsunami. The diversity of cultural appropriateness across the 90 communities and the variation in design solutions was a great learning experience as well as the opportunity to work for international aid organisations and government bodies as resource donated to the project by Lend Lease."

Ms Mudge said she had always been interested in physics and maths and her secondary school teachers, in Bendigo, gave her the confidence to be able to pursue a career in engineering.

"So I went and picked out a university course in Sydney and along the way I did some work experience in design and then decided that's always an area I can come back to and construction is where I'd perhaps learn more about how to be a good designer," she said.

"So I traded the pencil for some boots and have loved it ever since.

"I was recruited out of university to Lend Lease and just love the opportunity of the diversity of jobs that they have to offer.

"The different roles across that time - it's been nine years for me now with the company and I'm still challenge on every role on every project, so it's great."

Keep an eye on the Bendigo Advertiser's Hospital HQ page for the next hospital profile. 

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