Two smiling Austin Health nurses, one is holding a pen and a clipboardTwo smiling Austin Health nurses, one is holding a pen and a clipboardTwo smiling Austin Health nurses, one is holding a pen and a clipboard


Graduate Nurse Program

Mental Health Stream - Graduate Nurse Program

Developed with graduates in mind, our program offers aspiring mental health nurses an environment where they can flourish, and develop the contemporary knowledge and skills required to have a fulfilling career in mental health nursing.

About our program

  • We offer two intakes for the graduate mental health nurse program, in January and May, allowing flexibility for our graduates to choose the intake that best suits them.
  • Employment opportunities range from 0.8 EFT to 1 EFT, showcasing our commitment to accommodating our graduates' needs.
  • Your graduate year comprises two six-month mental health rotations, followed by the Clinical Advanced Placement (CAP) Year. During this year, you will complete an additional two rotations under the full support of our Educators.

About the Mental Health Division

Based just 15km from the Melbourne CBD, Austin Health is one of Australia's major health services.

The Mental Health Division is structured into four directorates, each offering dynamic learning opportunities:

  • Infant & Youth Mental Health Service (ICYMHS)
  • Adult Mental Health Service (AMHS)
  • Triage, Assessment, and Planning Service (TAPS)
  • Mental Health Specialty Services

These services are spread across our three main campuses: Austin Hospital, Heidelberg Repatriation Hospital and the Royal Talbot Rehabilitation Centre.

For more information about the mental health services offered at Austin Health, please visit clinics and services.

Why choose Austin Health for your graduate program?

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

Through our enduring partnership with the University of Melbourne, you will have the opportunity to complete specialised study days, assessments, and training throughout your graduate year.

The University of Melbourne recognises this as "Recognition of Prior Learning" for three separate modules towards your Postgraduate Diploma of Mental Health. This initiative not only saves you time but also reduces costs when pursuing your postgraduate diploma during the CAP year.

Reflective practice and clinical supervision

Defined as "Learning through and from experience towards gaining new insight of self and practice." Every month, our graduates convene for reflective practice sessions, deemed essential by Austin Health for supporting the development of mental health nurses. Throughout your graduate year, you will be paired with an experienced clinical supervisor who will support reflection, learning, and development.

Statewide services

Austin Health Mental Health Division hosts numerous specialised statewide services, enriching your learning experience with diversity:

  • Psychological Trauma Recovery Service (PTRS): Graduates have the opportunity to work within the inpatient service, Ward 17.
  • Brain Disorders Program: Based at Royal Talbot Hospital, graduates can work across the Brain Disorders inpatient service and rotate into the Community Brain Disorders Assessment and Treatment Service.
  • Statewide Child and Family Centre (Booboop Narrkwarren Nagarra-jarra-noun "the Family Healing Centre")
  • Transition Support Unit: Only one of two in the state TSU provides a supportive inpatient service for consumers with a mental illness and cognitive or intellectual disability.

Who will you work with?

Recognising the significance of supporting graduates transitioning into mental health nursing, Austin Health ensures ample support throughout the program.

You will be guided by a variety of experienced clinicians, overseen by the Manager of Nursing Education for Mental Health, Kayleigh Kerr, and supported by your Early Careers Coordinator, Monika Drew.

Additionally, you will collaborate with dedicated Clinical Nurse Educators and preceptors throughout each rotation, focusing on enhancing your assessment and intervention skills.

Attend an information session

Want to know more about the Mental Health Graduate Nurse Program? Come and meet us at an information session in person at Austin Hospital or online.



Tuesday 30 April 2024 5pm to 7pm
Wednesday 8 May 2024 5pm to 7pm (online)
Thursday 16 May 2024 5pm to 7pm
Monday 20 May 2024 5pm to 7pm
Monday 28 May 2024 10am to 12.30pm (online)

You can book free tickets via Eventbrite.

Contact us

Monika Drew
Acting Clinical Nurse consultant – Early Careers Coordinator

Kayleigh Kerr
Manager of Nursing Education, Mental Health

More information

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