Eva Dabasy











About Eva Dabasy

Eva was reluctant to teach at William Angliss when the opportunity first arose in 1972. She had been teaching food science and nutrition at Emily McPherson College and was returning to work after maternity leave. By reputation, to her William Angliss meant boisterous apprentice butchers on trains. At her interview she was asked to describe her experience to date. When she replied that she had developed the Food Science Course at Emily McPherson College (now RMIT University), Ray Way announced that she had the job as Head of the Food Science Department. Her classroom was a very old chemistry laboratory, which was thankfully updated into a multipurpose space to optimise classroom learning with the facility to conduct food science demonstrations and practical work.

Eva loved her work and she especially loved teaching students who were curious. Her nutrition courses, whilst being created to meet the needs of the workplace, were delivered such that students had a grasp of their own food choices, including the impact of these on their personal health. She also linked the teaching of food science to industry practice to ensure that graduates were effective in their future work and encouraged the teachers in her department to ensure their teaching also focused on student needs, a job at which they excelled.

Eva did a great deal of consultancy work whilst at William Angliss. Consultancies included specialised nutrition training for shift workers at Kodak, recommendations for nutritionally sound boardroom lunches for Smorgon Consolidated Industries, and ICI (now Orica), and audit of the nutritional quality of meal delivery at five of Victoria's Prisons. She also completed a nutritional analysis of the marketing practices of fresh food produce, meats, delicatessen items, 'low fat desserts, and fresh salad preparation for Coles-Myer National Head Office Marketing Department to inform healthier options.

Eva found education consultancy on the international stage most rewarding. Project work included acting as adviser on standards, learning materials and assessment where a major output of the program was the development of 104 learning and assessment materials to optimise training delivery in 112 schools throughout Indonesia. She was saddened when that country's tourism industry took such a hit after the Bali bombings. Earlier Eva was also one of a six - member team of consultants representing the Asian Development Bank. The team's objective was to review Indonesia's current vocational education system sections pertinent to tourism and hospitality, and to propose strategies to meet the trained manpower requirements identified. She was also Consultant, Benchmarking for the General Organization of Technical Education and Vocational Training Curriculum Department, Saudi Arabia.

Eva enjoyed curriculum development and developed the course material for the Diploma of Tourism and Hospitality for the Penang project with RMIT University. Out of that work came the offer to develop the Bachelor of Applied Science (Tourism) and the Bachelor of Applied Science (Hospitality) to be implemented jointly by RMIT and William Angliss Institute in 1997. The degrees were nested in the Advanced Diploma of Tourism and the Advanced Diploma in Hospitality, para-professional programs in their own right and delivered by William Angliss Institute. These were extended in academic content to articulate into the third year of the relevant degrees to be delivered by RMIT University.

Eva retired from William Angliss Institute in 2002. Since then Eva has been education consultant for several projects, local and international. Eva's last consultancy with William Angliss Institute was as Project Manager, Degree Development in 2005-6. The outcome was registration of William Angliss Institute as a Private Provider of Higher Education and the development of two new degrees: the Bachelor of Tourism and Hospitality Management and the Bachelor of Culinary Management.

Eva remembers William Angliss Institute for the harmony and support between staff and also between staff and students. She said: The big thing was that people cared about each other – when the chips were down we cared. We helped each other. We collaborated. There was also a sense of community where people shared and exchanged ideas. This meant to give and take ....... and there was more give and less take.

Summary of the Interview

Interviewer:  Carmel Cedro
Interviewee: Eva Dabasy
Date of Interview: 13/06/2012
Recording Format: MP3      





Employment at WAI

  • First Introduction to WAI
  • Becoming Head of Food Science
  • Education & Circumstances leading up to it
  • Job responsibilities were a mixture of management and teaching
Emily MacPherson College; Nutrition;  Education Department; Faye More; Ray Way – Vice-Principal; Head of Food Science; chemistry lab; cooks; waiters; butchery; bakers; diploma stream; food service; certificate of catering; free masons hospital; Nutritionist;


Experience of Students

  • Liked students who were interested in improving their industry and in nutrition (for the workplace and their own)
  • The link between food preparation and health, nutrition in menu planning
  • Practical applications of food science and nutrition in the workplace
Course development; world heath; nutrition; menu planning; the food science of cooking techniques; catering in institutions, e.g., hospital, workplace, schools & airline, shipping, prisons, nursing home; shift work









Food Science at WAI

  • A new focus for the previous science department to Food Science and Nutrition
  • Consulting: development of short courses to meet industry needs, workplace catering- menu planning to optimise nutritional value
  • Media consultations to provide expert understanding of food, microbiology, nutrition
  • SBS asked opinion on McDonalds at Children’s Hospital, was interviewed but later ‘dressed down’ by director, Ray Way for not asking permission
Chemistry focus; practical application; consultant; short courses; Kodak; shift workers; Ansett Airlines; Smorgen’s; boardroom catering; Yiddish Jewish food; 4-week cycle menu; prison menus; Victorian Government; Media;  food poisoning; food spoilage; food microbiology; SBS news; McDonald’s; Children’s Hospital; Ray Way; mid-90s; Angliss Council;








Delegations and travel

  • Gave a paper on competency based training at Avinashilingam  University in India
  • Masters degree: The History of Nutrition Education in Indonesia in its Institutional Setting
  • Consultant to a number of aid projects, e.g., Asian Development Bank Project to assess then Home Economics schooling system in Indonesia with the view of revamping them to become technical schools training middle level hospitality and tourism staff; AusAid project to set up learning resources and assessment tools in line with the newly introduced competency standards into Indonesia.
  • Developer of learning resources for competency, staff training, etc.
  • Eager to strive and use skills to develop new programs in line with emerging needs
Delegation; outside projects;  RMIT; Coimbatore; Consultant: Indonesia and Malaysia;  Nutrition Information for Catering; Chris Coates Associate Director; AusAid; Asian Development Bank;  Denpasar; Bali; Northern Sumatra; Jakarta; Lake Toba; Teacher’s College; 2000; competency-based training; Hawthorn Institute; tourism & hospitality industries; learning resources & assessment tools;9/11; Bali Bombings; Wayne Crosbie;  Asian  Development Bank;


Food Science Department

  • Started in 1972
  • WAI grew and by mid 1980s other TAFEs in Victoria needed help to teach the subject
  • Held workshops for teachers, so that they could better enable the understanding of the science of food
  • Food Science in its own right was later taken out of competency standards specifying food skills
  • Bachelor of Culinary Management with a component of nutrition and science but not enough
  • Remembers Linda Jessup was a student in her class, won Young Apprentice of the Year
Box Hill TAFE; Holmesglen TAFE; Food Science for Cooking; Food Technologist; training other TAFE teachers; enzymes;  food skills competency requirements; food hygiene; pastry cooking; baking;  Bachelor of Culinary Management; RMIT degrees; Young Apprentice of the Year;  Linda Jessup; Baker’s Association; Butcher’s Association Awards; Nutrition Society of Australia; Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology, Chair of Nutrition Committee; Member of the Board of Nutrition Australia;


Being a Curriculum Developer

  • Focus on trades and industry with food science, nutrition, business and humanities seen as support skills
  • Project Manager for the development of curriculum for degrees and VET courses
  • Project Manager for the development of the William Angliss Institute-RMIT University degrees in both tourism and hospitality
  • Generation of optimum articulation arrangements between William Angliss Institute courses and relevant undergraduate degrees at Monash, La Trobe, Victoria and RMIT Universities
  • In 2004-5 there was an opening for TAFEs to offer degrees, so was employed as outside consultant to act as Project Manager for the development of the B. Tourism and Hospitality Management and the B Culinary Management as well as the Institute’s submission for Authority to Conduct the degrees at the Institute as a Private Provider of Higher Education
Degree program;  hospitality, tourism, business; curriculum development; Penang project with RMIT; Monash University; Latrobe University; Deakin University; degree/diploma programs; project manager for degree development & later, implementation;


Growth of Food Science Department

  • Industry push to remove food science from curriculum for larger focus on industry, in light of a changing industry
  • Department affected by restructure of WAI;
  • Fantastic staff support around her
Competency standards; more focused on practical skills; changing nature of industry, e.g., the use of pre-mix in bread-making; and WAI; Efficiencies; timetabling; Short Courses; teacher union regulations;  


Facilities at WAI

  • Inheriting the old chemistry labs, dishevelled and falling apart
  • Redevelopment of new facilities and areas
  • Then converted into cooking labs,
1960s chemistry lab; Mr West; Bunsen Burners; Densil Pinto; test tubes; Col Cuneen; Angliss Chair; council funded refurbishment; registration of William Angliss Institute as a Private Provider of Higher Education;


Reflecting on her time at WAI

  • Great sense of community and friendship with staff & students
Sense of community;


After Angliss

  • Spent thirty years full time at Institute
  • Acted as education consultant for four years after retirement, including undertaking projects for William Angliss Institute
Retirement: Planned to do more consulting: in China, Indonesia and the Philippines; however personal life changed and so focused on theology, gaining a Masters in Theology;


Career Highlights

  • Contribution  to the setting up of tourism and hospitality education at vocational level in Indonesia
  • Leading the development of the Institute’s degree programs
  • Awarded the Advanced Diploma of Hospitality Teacher of the Year Prize on numerous occasions
  • A sense of personal growth & development
  • Great friends made during her time
Tourism & hospitality education system; Indonesia; degree programs; Applied Nutrition course; Certificate of Catering; Diploma of Catering & Hotel Management; electives; curriculum design; Teacher of the Year Prize; Honorary Professor; Medan Tourism & Hospitality School; Tsunami; 


Interview Concludes




Listen to our Oral Histories online

    Alan Stebbing        Maurice-BW  
   Beth-BW        Peter-BW  
   Eva-BW        RayE-BW  
   Darlyl-BW        Richard-BW  
   Graham-BW        Ron-BW  
   John BW        Steven-BW  
   Iance-BW        Win-BW  
   Eric-BW        RayWay BW  
   Shirley-BW        Jim-BW  

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