60 seconds with Azam Naghavi


PhD Scholar and international student

If you could have any job in the world, what would it be?
Being a teacher. I was a teacher and a counsellor and when I go back to Iran, I’ll be teaching at university.

If you could time travel where would you go?
I would love to go to the future. Never in my life have I ever dreamed to be a child again or to redo things again. Not because I regret about what I have done but I’m more curious about what will happen next.

If you could give one piece of advice to someone new in Australia, what would it be?
I’ve learnt not to take things too personally. When I first arrived in Australia, I found it very difficult to interpret people’s actions and I sometimes had the feeling that I was being discriminated against and it makes life easier to know it’s not always the case.

During the first couple of months, I didn’t know much about road rules and I was waiting at the traffic lights to cross the road and every driver who wanted to turn left, would stop there and look at me before turning. I was in Islamic dress, in the head scarf and I was so embarrassed thinking, what’s wrong with me? Why are all these drivers looking at me? And when I finally got a car and began driving myself, I realised that the drivers weren’t looking at me but were just doing a head check!

What are you enjoying doing at the moment?
I’m enjoying motherhood at the moment. My son is nearly 10 years old and he’s fun to be with. He’s very patient and doesn’t complain when I’m working on my thesis.  I also volunteer at the Iranian Cultural School every Saturday and I teach reading and writing in Persian.  I like working with children and helping other people. I’m doing a lot of writing at the moment because I want to submit my thesis very soon.

What talent would you most like to possess?
I would really love to be able to draw: nature, trees, grasses and lakes. I recently went to Mount Gambier and I would like to draw a picture of the two lakes I saw there.