Early Career Osteopath Advisory Group

Members of our Early Career Osteopath Advisory Group inform and advise the association on the needs of students, graduates and early career osteopaths.

The association has an overarching goal to enhance and promote osteopathy. Over the next five years, the osteopathy profession in Australia is likely to increase by close to 100%. As the profession increases in size, diversity and changes in demographics, we know that we need to consider the particular needs of graduates and early career osteopaths. The Board of Osteopathy Australia has recognised that such voices do not currently sit on our Board.


Julia Biernacki (Chair)

Julia is an osteopathic Director of the Osteopathy Australia Board.

Brett Wiener

Brett is an osteopathic Director of the Osteopathy Australia Board.

Brooke Campbell

Brooke graduated from Victoria University in June 2021, and is a strong believer in ‘you reap what you sow.’ Brooke’s interest areas include women’s health, paediatric and geriatric care. Part of Brooke’s final year of study included an internship in regional Victoria where she was able to treat a large number of patients in only eight weeks. This opened Brooke’s eyes to the importance and value of providing learning and employment opportunities to osteopathy students. She has been a SOMA representative through her studies, including taking on the role of secretary for the past two years. This has enabled Brooke to build friendships with students across multiple year levels and across multiple universities in order to voice students’ concerns and create change.

Melanie Saykan

Melanie is a fourth-year osteopathy student at Victoria University. She has worked in the Federal Government sector for over 10 years, and notes that contributing to the community has always been a major driver for her. After completing her postgraduate studies in accounting, she discovered and pursued her passion for health sciences. She hopes that being a member of the Advisory Group will give her the opportunity to seamlessly apply her communication skills from collaborating with multiple stakeholders in a tax advisory role to the promotion of osteopathy.

Teano Nguyen-Verdenet

Teano was an international student at Southern Cross University and relocated to the south-west of Western Australia to start his own practice. After a year in practice, Teano realised the challenge of building a practice in rural areas. People suffering from chronic pain and the general public’s lack of knowledge about osteopathy as a profession can be seen either as a barrier or an opportunity. However, he believes osteopathy has a unique holistic approach to healthcare that can serve people in rural areas. He says he joined the Advisory Group to help Osteopathy Australia members and the next generation of osteopaths to move to rural and regional areas and be equipped with the tools they need to support this population, promote the profession and see the opportunity that regional areas have to offer.

Sarah Cipollone

Sarah graduated from Victoria University in 2017 and spent some time living abroad and working in Melbourne and the Central Coast before settling on the Northern Rivers of NSW. With a love for holistic care and empowering people on their journey to wellness, Sarah has found her passion in the mystery of chronic pain. She believes that her generation of healthcare providers has a unique and powerful platform to change the conventional wisdom of pain and wellness. She is excited to join the Advisory Group and represent the voices of her community who share her concerns and hopes for the future of osteopathy.

Christine Thompson

Christine graduated as an osteopath from Southern Cross University on the Gold Coast. She is originally from the UK and lived in Queensland for thirteen years before relocating to Adelaide. After experiencing first hand how injuries can impact the body and mind, Christine wanted to help others by reducing their pain and improving their performance. This led her to pursue remedial massage and osteopathic studies. With a background that includes prior roles in university settings, she possesses an understanding of the challenges encountered by both students and staff in academic environments. Christine aims to utilise her insights and experiences to enhance the journey from student to qualified osteopath for her peers.

Beth Morgan

Beth is a fourth year student completing her Master’s of Science (Osteopathy) at Victoria University. She has worked as a Pilates instructor since 2017 and plays a role in mentoring students undertaking their Pilates instructor training. Beth believes in continuously up skilling, as when you stop learning you stop personal growth. So, in 2021, she completed her APPI (Australian Physiotherapy Pilates Institute) Clinical Pilates Certification.  Beth has also completed a Bachelor of Food and Nutrition Sciences at Deakin University and hopes to combine her love of anatomy with her other obtained skill sets to provide a holistic approach to treating patients in the near future. Beth has served on the Early Career Advisory Group since 2022 and hopes to add value to matters of current and future students, to further enhance the Osteopathy profession.  

Matthew O'Connor

Matthew is a fourth year student completing his Masters of Applied Science (Osteopathy) at Victoria University and is also a sports trainer and laboratory demonstrator. He has spent the last five years working as a development coach for a cohort of over a hundred EDFL Umpires, with a secondary position in injury prevention and sports training commencing this year. He has a passion for anatomy and physiology and this year began working as a near peer for the Bachelor of Osteopathy anatomy classes. This role has allowed his mentoring to expand into a Laboratory Demonstrator role, teaching human physiology to first year Biomedicine students. Mathew has served on the Early Career Osteopath Advisory Group since 2022.