Community beat lures teacher
KERRY Olsen's passion to give back to the community is reflected by the choices she has made in her career.
Lowood Police Station acting officer in charge Senior Sergeant Olsen is also a teacher and has enjoyed both areas of work.
Almost 20 years ago, while working towards obtaining a teaching degree, the opportunity arose for Snr-Sgt Olsen to consider a different career path.
Despite trying her hand in a couple of different areas and having begun studying a science degree before moving to teaching, the thought to join the police force had never crossed her mind.
"As time went on, and as I met people and talked to them about their roles while I was studying, I learned about which roles could make the biggest impact,” she said.
Though it may come as a surprise to some, Snr-Sgt Olsen said a number of the officers she worked with were also qualified teachers.
"Lots of people have two jobs; it's not an uncommon thing.”
She said the areas complemented one another with both jobs providing a service to community.
"It's a similar role,” she said.
"People want to give back to the community so it's not surprising they would choose those similar careers.”
Having worked at the Lowood station for nearly three years after moving from Ipswich, Snr-Sgt Olsen said she was fond of working in the rural community.
"I enjoy that community you can have in a rural environment,” she said.
"We tend to get to know people and can actually form relationships with members of the community.
"We can spend more time with them, whereas in bigger communities, you'd have to be there 30 years to get to that level.”
This October, Snr-Sgt Olsen will celebrate 20 years in the police service.
The knowledge she can make a difference continues to drive her passion on a daily basis.
"Knowing police play a very important role in serving the community,” she said.
"Every day we make decisions that can have a big impact on people's lives and we do our best to make it a good impact.”