It’s a big week for one of Ambulance Victoria’s (AV) newest paramedics, who attended her graduation last weekend and will be a major contributor in this weekend’s AFLW Grand Final, as AFLW Player Development Coordinator for the North Melbourne Tasmanian Kangaroos.
Tahni Nestor, who was last week recognised for graduating as an advanced life support paramedic, undertook her studies and on-road training undertook alongside her work with the Kangaroos.
In her football role, Tahni works with players to help them develop themselves both on and off the field – something she models in her own life by balancing two career paths.
“I’ve always enjoyed having something to do outside of work or university, or school when I was younger,” Tahni said.
“One of the things I love the most is that no matter what happens during my shift as a paramedic, I get to go to football that week.
“I think it helps you to be able to get the most out of yourself in both areas, because you have an outlet.”
Tahni began her healthcare career as an Ambulance Community Officer (ACO) and a nurse, after studying a double degree in nursing and paramedicine in her hometown of Ballarat.
While working as a nurse, she played in the inaugural season of the AFLW for Carlton and was drafted by North Melbourne in 2019.
Tahni played two seasons for the Roos then joined the club’s staff, taking on her current player development role.
She successfully applied for a spot as a graduate paramedic and started her AV career at the Essendon-Moonee Ponds branch.
She said she finds there are plenty of similarities in her two jobs.
“They very much overlap in terms of why I got into one and why I got into the other,” she said.
“As a paramedic, I really enjoy the teamwork nature of the role and I enjoy that it’s very different every day and we’re constantly learning and growing.
“There’s a big emphasis on teamwork both in being a paramedic at AV and working for the football club.
“Both are community based and centred around working with people, and both can change day to day.”
North Melbourne play the Brisbane Lions in Sunday’s AFLW Grand Final and Tahni will be running water for the team.
“These girls have worked really hard and it’s been a long time coming, so it’s super exciting for them and the club as a whole to be in the Grand Final,” she said.
When the pressure starts to hit, she’ll be able to draw on her experience at AV.
“Having worked as a paramedic, there’s a lot of different things that can happen that are high pressure and you have to be able to remain calm,” she said.
“That helps me in different settings to always be able to remain calm.”
Tahni Nestor (second from right) with her family, at last weekend’s AV graduation event.
Tahni Nestor working for the North Melbourne Tasmanian Kangaroos AFLW side.