Select Page

National Careers Week: Lucy Coleman shoots for the stars

Lucy Coleman (left) and Anneka Reardon in action.

Rowing Australia is proud of the diversity and talent our athletes exhibit off the water. Many combine life as an elite athlete with demanding study and work schedules to ensure they are well-prepared for the next chapter beyond the boat.

From fashion design to nursing, to real estate, engineering, trades, medicine, veterinary science and law, our athletes are making contributions across a huge section of the workforce.

As we celebrate National Careers Week, we take a look at trajectory of Lucy Coleman, who flying high in her pursuit of a dream job in aerospace engineering.

Name Lucy Coleman

Age 25

Australian Rowing Team background Lucy exploded into the Australian Rowing Team in 2022. She hadn’t made a national junior team but “from the moment Anneka (Reardon) and I got in the boat together, we gelled. It was profound”. In 2022, Lucy and Anneka won Silver in the Lightweight Double Sculls at World Cup 2, were runners up at the Henley Royal Regatta and placed 10th at the World Rowing Championships.

Current career Lucy is a student at UNSW in the Aerospace Engineering stream, studying the analysis, design and operation of aircraft and spacecraft. In 2023, she was awarded the prestigious Ben Lexcen Sports Scholarship.

What made you interested in aerospace engineering? “I grew up on a property outside of Moree in northern NSW. My mum’s dad was a flight engineer and my dad’s dad was a pilot. Myinterest in aerodynamics grew as I flew back and forth from my studies on a rowing scholarship at the University of Tulsa in the United States. So I started to marvel at flight and dream about how I could impact the world with engineering.”

What is the most challenging and rewarding part of your career outside of elite sport? “I genuinely love what I am studying. Like many elite student-athletes, balance can be a challenge, but I love a challenge. I regularly reminds myself to simply be better than I was yesterday. Hard work underpins everything I have achieved.”

What’s the secret to juggling life as an elite athlete and having a career off the water “Balance is the key. Outside of rowing and my studies I love to walk and listen to podcasts on mindfulness. I find the beach therapeutic and love nothing more than a coffee with friends. Growing up in the country has taught me the value of a simple conversation

What is some advice for young athletes when it comes to trying to balance a career and hitting High Performance goals? I’m striving to represent Australia at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, so I have set goals to enjoy training, be more present and have my best race at the World Championships. My advice to young athletes would be don’t take rowing too seriously, be honest with yourself and truly enjoy what you are doing.”

The Australian Sports Commission is encouraging athletes to take advantage of its suite of programs to assist them in preparing for a life after sport.