After 32 years of medical study, 51 year old Coast resident Jeannine Paterson has secured an intern role with Sunshine Coast University Hospital.
After 32 years of medical study, 51 year old Coast resident Jeannine Paterson has secured an intern role with Sunshine Coast University Hospital. Patrick Woods

'Never too late': Doctor starts career when most retire

WHILE many Australians dream of retirement after turning 50, one woman is just taking the first steps to her dream career.

Jeannine Paterson, 51, will begin her internship as a full qualified doctor at the Sunshine Coast University Hospital after completing her post-graduate degree at Griffith University on the Gold Coast.   

It's been a long and windy road for the mother of three, gaining qualifications in naturopathy, nursery and midwifery while studying in Austria, New York, Melbourne and the Sunshine Coast.

But now, 32 years after she first began her studies, Paterson will pick up the stethoscope and spread the word, especially to women, that it's never too late to follow your dreams.

"It is never too late," she told the Sunshine Coast Daily. "you have to at least give it a go.

"I thought I was too old, thought why would they take someone my age.

"Sometimes you underestimate yourself. Women my age think career life is over at 40.

"I didn't want to regret something, and low and behold I got in."