After several years of work in the finance industry, Ryan changed direction to pursue a career in local government – and in 2017 was elected the Mayor of Port Stephens.

He didn’t take this new responsibility lightly. Ryan decided to enrol in an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) to advance his leadership, business and management skills – and better serve his community.

“In my role as Mayor, each day I cover a vast array of topics across all industries. I wanted to know the theory behind the decisions our organisation and community makes, to be able to make better decisions in the future,” Ryan said.

As a lifelong resident of Port-Stephens, Ryan has always seen the University of Newcastle as his university – and his postgrad experience did not disappoint.

“Firstly, the connections with other students, lecturers and guest speakers have been invaluable. Secondly, the ability to take a deeper dive with my EMBA work into our own organisations projects has allowed me to make more informed choices across the organisations.

“Each employee at the university has delivered a unique positive experience to the course. I could not speak highly enough of each individual that has helped share the incredible journey throughout the course,” he said.

Ryan says his study journey has set him up for success in any future workplace.

“The content of my course has lifted my confidence in knowing that my decision making has been backed by the latest and greatest research.

“The EMBA has opened my eyes to the world of consulting. I hope to continue in the world of politics for now, however, I have been introduced to new opportunities thanks to the EMBA,” Ryan said.

Study an EMBA at the University of Newcastle


Ryan Palmer

Ryan says his study journey has set him up for success in any future workplace.

It has not only been about my growth, but the growth of my peers. To see how much my peers have grown over the course has been heart-warming.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.