Life beyond Radford

Mentor If you’d like me to be your mentor please contact Collegians to arrange a meeting.
Last updated 15.05.2017

Andrew FitzPatrick

Class of 2002
OCCUPATION Chess coaching, tournament and equipment services
Lives Mudgeeraba, Australia
Attendance at radford Years 7-12
House Wandoo
  • La Trobe University, Business, 2004-2006
  • Advanced Diploma, Australian Business Academy, Sport and Recreation Management, 2003-2003
Work history
  • Co-Owner, Gardiner Chess, 2015
  • Director of Operations, Gardiner Chess, 2010-2015
  • Women's League Manager, Capital Football, 2008-2010
  • Chess Coach and Interschool Coordinator, Chess Kids, 2004-2008
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What does life look for you now?

Living with my partner on the Gold Coast, I currently part own Gardiner Chess, which is one of the largest chess companies in Australia. It keeps me super busy, and on the road sometimes as I have been running tournament throughout QLD for the past 7 years. I don't play as much sport as I used to, due to working too much (something to be changed!) but used to referee football and play futsal until the physio yelled at me.

Tell us what you are passionate about?

Family and friends, dance music, chess, football.

When you were young, what were you hoping to be when you grew up?

I originally wanted to be a weather presenter (Mr. Fraser in Year 10 Geo inspired!) before wanting to be a player agent in the world of football and then changing to just wanting to be involved in sports administration.

What is your favourite Radford moment?

Year 9 outward bound camp was pretty funny and had some fantastic memories to come out of it, but perhaps the most entertaining was our Year 12 farewell concert in the Quad where I ended up crowd surfing with a broken wrist.

How easy was it to decide what to do in life?

I think that until you give some things a go you don't know exactly what it is you are looking for.
I see so many employees finish their degree and either not find a job or change their mind, and they end up back at uni once again.

I feel getting some experience in an industry (volunteer or internship) is the best way to get to know if that area is right for you.

Did your further study or career go exactly as you'd planned?

Study wise - yes! I ended up 12mths ahead of the rest of the Australian Business Academy crew when I left there....but that never translated into an advantage in the real world (see below).

What do you know now, that you wish you'd known when you were at Radford?

That i'd laugh when I look back at how much crap i copped for being the chess nerd throughout school. If you are good at something or passionate about something - own it!

What advice do you have for current students?

Network! I don't think this can be underestimated enough! I'm positive I didn't land various roles in Melbourne due to lack of contacts in the sports industry - yet when I moved back to Canberra years later, it was old networks that landed me a gig.

Anything else that you would like to share?

Be true to yourself - if you can't love and own who you are, then others will find it hard to as well.
Be dedicated to your passions and work hard to achieve your goals (set big goals!)

Where are you now?