Damien is his sixties, Australian born, and has retired from his fulltime employment. Damien was trained as an apprentice fitter and turner, but only worked in the vocation for six months, in a central Qld mine. He then completed a course in manual arts teaching and became a Qld manual arts teacher in different secondary schools in the country and Brisbane until retirement. He is currently doing some voluntary work in woodturning in schools. 

Danim is in his forties, originally from Vietnam, and currently a contractor of the NBN rollout. Danim’s transitions are often associated with the fortunes of the family business. The move to the Gold Coast (transition #1) which led to him having a disrupted and unengaged school life was precipitated by being left with his brother and sister in Brisbane while his parents open the restaurant. Then, he moved down there to be more closely supervised and also engage with the family business. Then, when the decision was to sell the restaurant and move back to Brisbane for the tobacconist and then from there to the grocery store these for all decisions associated with the health of the family business (transition #2). The sale of the grocery store after nine ½ years led to the retirement of his parents and him taking a different direction, and lastly working with his brother (transition #3).

Dave is in his seventies, Australian born, and is currently working as a sessional academic. Dave’s working life was primarily associated with adult education except for his very first paid employment in the public service sector, after which he became a high school teacher. Dave has experienced a number of transitions across his adult life. The most significant transitions after becoming a high school teacher include (i) being conscripted and becoming a teacher in the army in Papua New Guinea (PNG), (ii) becoming a civilian lecturer at a training college in PNG, (iii) becoming program coordinator in an Australian university department of continuing education, then (iv)moving into academic positions,  and then (v) deputy director of a state government Centre for Lifelong Learning and Development, before transitioning to become a consultant, casual academic and researcher.

Dylan is his eighties, Australian born, and has retired from fulltime employment. Dylan’s working life was associated with being a qualified civil engineer. He has experienced a number of transitions across his adult life, beginning with a draftsman position. After completing a civil engineering degree, his transitions included (i) dam building with the Qld Coordinator General’s Dept., (ii) road and motorway construction and contracts writing with the Qld Dept of Main Roads (MRD), and finally (iii) part-time engineering liaison with a private company, and as a part-time contract engineer with MRD. 


Emma is in her earlier thirties, originally from Burundi and growing in Tanzania, and is now working as a registered nurse in a private hospital in Queensland, Australia. She migrated to Australia as a refugee and completed year 10 and senior secondary schooling (i.e., years 11 and 12) in Australia. Her worklife transitions are quite straightforward, starting with an internship at the hospital as part of her nursing degree, then has been employed as a registered nurse upon graduation. During 8 years of the nursing role, she has moved across different hospital wards/areas. She has initiated those transitions to suit her interests. She has been on the current ward for five years and enjoys her work in this area. She does not consider nursing as her long-term career but would prefer working in the health industry in a different role, perhaps research-based opportunity.

Erika is in her fifties, Australian born, and is currently employed as the manager of a medical practice. Erika has experienced a number of transitions, including (i) completing one-year course on secretarial at TAFE then working in customer service in a bank for eight years, (ii) becoming an accountant then manager at an insurance broking firm for four years, (iii) moving to Brisbane, Queensland to take on their (her and her husband’s) silver recovery business, before (iv) becoming a receptionist then manager at a medical practice.


Felicia is in her fifties, originally from Iran, and is currently working in the pharmacy industry. The Islamic revolution with its religious persecution in Iran left her with restricted opportunities to further education. She and her family left Iran and were refuse in Australia. Due to family commitments, Felicia’s educational trajectory of becoming a doctor was disrupted. She has experienced a number of transitions across her worklife, including (i) becoming a stay-at-home mother and working night shifts in a factory assembling petri dishes for microbiology lab, (ii) returning to university to do her diploma in medical laboratory science then working in a pathology laboratory in Adelaide then Brisbane, then (iii) returning to university to complete a degree in international business then being employed in the pharmacy industry.

Freda is in her forties, Australian born, and is currently schoolteacher of English in Geneva, Switzerland. Freda has experienced a number of transitions revolving around books and tutoring English. These transitions include (i) working in a military then a children’s bookshop, (ii) becoming a tutor then manager of a tutoring centre, (iii) moving to Geneva and working as an ESL teacher before (iv) becoming a schoolteacher. 


Harry is in his sixties, Australian born, and is currently self-employed in his business designing microprocessors. Harry has experienced a couple of major transitions across his adult life. First and foremost, he was (i) trained as Radio Mechanic and Radio Technician in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF); (ii) after 12 years, he left RAAF and became a laboratory technician in the Biochemistry Department of a university; (iii) after 18 years and a half, seeing opportunities related to high performance engines, he left the university and set up his own business designing microprocessors.