Tiki Swain's CV
Full name: Tamara Rachel Swain (preferred name: Tiki)
Citizenship: dual Australian and United States
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Educational background, qualifications and certificates
- B.Sc Curtin University of Technology (major in Applied Physics, strengths in Computer Science)
- Non-assessed participation in the Diploma of Museum Studies
- Year 12 TEE in Art, Literature, Chemistry, Geography, Maths II and III, Physics
- Additional private training in bush skills such as survival, snake handling, and tracking.
- Senior First Aid and Remote Area First Aid certificates from St John's Ambulance, W.A.
Recent work experience
January 2006 - present Programmes Officer / Presenter, Scienceworks, Museum Victoria, Melbourne
Duties including presenting public shows, education shows, organising and running children's activities, and general assistance with visitor programmes.
July 2005 - present Freelance science writer/communicator, Melbourne
Contracts including conference organiser for the 2005 Users Meeting of the Australian Synchrotron Project, and science writer for media communications company Science in Public. The latter has involved several projects including media release writing, website redesign, background research and newsletter preparation. I am currently assisting them with communications for the Australian Institute of Physics.
Dec 2003 - April 2005 Communications Systems Operator, Fire and Emergency Services Authority Western Australia
- Answering 000 fire calls and handling public emergencies (resourcing and dispatch)
- Answering State Emergency Service calls, ensuring that the general publicís problems were dealt with wherever possible
- Answering general enquiries calls to do with the day to day work of Operations
- Managing the controlling station of a metropolitan and country radio network
2002-2003 Community friends group representative (volunteer) to the Environmental Liaison Advisory Group of the Town of Victoria Park Council (within the Perth metro area, W.A)
This group held representatives of the major environmental interests in the town - bushland, water catchment, animal rescue, the Urban Weed Council among others - and two councillors with relevant experience and interests. We met monthly to consider environmental issues in the town and what projects the council should be considering, such as the CCC accreditation process or the reduction of plastic bags. We also were kept informed of the progress Councilís Infrastructure/Parks Management were making in the joint metropolitan council recycling station being built, with the opportunity to feed back environmental issues we felt might arise. In particular I represented the interests of Hillview Terrace Bushland, and I did the original legwork preparing possible plant lists for a public campaign to encourage gardeners to plant local natives to cut down on water and fertiliser use. This campaign was run after my time in ELAG.
March 2002 - Dec 2003 Freelance science communicator and technical writer, Perth, Western Australia
- Preparation of the "Ancient and Unusual" self-guided walk for school students on ancient plants and plant evolution for Kings Park and Botanic Garden, W.A.
- Checking and layout preparation for the Year 11 Physics Problems set book for the Science Teachers Association of W.A.
- Research and development for a new interactive schools programme in science and maths for Bubblemania
- Initial preparation for schools programmes for the (then unopened) Gravity Discovery Centre in Gingin, W.A.
2000 - 2004 Science and mathematics tutor for girls in years 10-12
February 1999 - January 2005 Volunteer Guide at Kings Park and Botanic Gardens
- Leading interstate and international tourists on guided walks on several topics
- Leading school groups on individually tailored/structured guided walks
- Staffing the Park's Information Centre
- Preparation of training and further education materials for other Guides
January 1996 - December 1999 Schools Liaison Officer, Department of Applied Physics, Curtin University of Technology
- Preparation of department newsletter
- Answering school student queries about the course and career paths
- Presence at careers expos
- Organising, running and delivering school tours of the Department and its research groups, including interactive lab demonstrations on topics such as fluorescence, electromagnetism, liquid nitrogen, light and sound or whatever the teacher wanted
- Managing and redeveloping library displays on physics topics that were circulated through school libraries
- Managing and helping redevelop promotional brochures
- Arranging visits to schools to talk about physics and science careers and perform demonstrations
1995 - 1998 Casual science demonstrator and presenter, Physics Roadshow
Part of a team presenting physics-based demonstrations in schools tagged as having many underprivileged students who were not reaching their potential. The aim was to promote interest in science and physics from years 8 to 12, be that to assist the 12s with concepts in the university entrance exams, to encourage the 8-10s to turn up to class and not truant, or anything else that the teachers felt would assist them.
- Logistical tasks involved gear management and selection, set-up in a range of venues (whatever the school had provided us with on the day), training and assisting other casual presenters for individual demonstrations, teacher liaison.
- Presenting tasks included class management, topic presentations/demos, running hands-on sessions, discussing and presenting safety issues, writing and running problem-solving thought puzzles, writing/developing scripts.
February 1993 - January 2000 Volunteer producer, production assistant and presenter, Curtin University Radio 6NR
- Choosing talent, interviewing and editing interviews for broadcast
- Preparing music and other material for broadcast
- Taking competition, talkback and general enquiry phone calls for music shows, special interest shows and talks shows
- Training other volunteers
Recent relevant publications
- Extraordinary Plants, co-authored with Palenque Blair and photographer Damon Annison. A cross between a field guide and a coffee table book showcasing and highlighting plants of the W.A. coastal sand plains, discussing their uses and cultural history along with their scientific interest.
- Cover illustrations for Gynaezine numbers 1, 2 and 3 in 2003, 2004 and 2005 respectively. Illustrations were botanical drawings of local plants.
Australian Science Communicators and Australian Association of Environmental Educators
Computer packages and software Iím familiar with
Microsoft Office and Word, Wordpad, StarOffice, vi, Netscape, Mozilla, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Lynx, Mutt, various webmail clients, Outlook Express, Frontpage, Lotus Notes. Iím familiar with and comfortable in both Unix / Linux environments and Windows / Dos environments, both text-based and GUI-based. I can write HTML code.
Hobbies, interests, other skills
Local ecologies and environment, plants and gardening, native birds and animals, primitive skills (e.g. survival, tracking, toolmaking), climate and weather, theatre and drama, backstage work, costuming, sewing and clothing design, drawing, painting, the science-art interface, music, singing, dancing, martial arts (particularly Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Aikido), travel, languages, vegetarian cooking, science fiction/fantasy, radio, cryptography and codes, Linux/Unix, photography.
Last modified on 19 May 2006
This page is a creation of Tiki Swain for and on behalf of Tiki Swain.
If I say Tiki Swain one more time, the webcrawlers might notice it.