New STEM scholarship for rural and regional students

A new scholarship to support regional and remote students interest in studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields has been announced by the federal Department of Education and Training.

The Rural and Regional Enterprise Scholarship aims to improve educational attainment, skills development, and employment opportunities for regional and remote students.

The program objectives are to:

  • increase the number of students engaging with STEM disciplines;
  • increase the number of students able to undertake their preferred course of STEM study irrespective of their location; and
  • increase program participants’ rate of course completion relative to their peers.

The scholarship will support at least 1200 undergraduate, postgraduate and Vocational Education and Training (VET) students to undertake a STEM qualification, including in the fields of health and agricultural science and will accommodate flexible study, including part-time and online students. Selection will be on the basis of need and merit and will support the participation of women and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Scholarship recipients may receive total scholarship payment up to $18,000, based on course length and type of study or training with an additional $500 available to scholarship recipients to support an internship to assist students to develop their professional experience.

Funding for the program is $24 million between 2017-18 and 2020-21 and will be administered through two rounds of applications for the 2018 and 2019 academic years, each for at least 600 Scholarships.

If you’d like to know more about the scholarships and how to apply follow the link HERE

ANU graduates rated Australia’s most employable

ANU graduates have been rated the nation’s most employable (for the 5th year in a row!). ANU students get a well-rounded education that employers are looking for. They learn from the world’s leading minds and they get the chance to do fieldwork, internships and global travel.

ANU graduates have been ranked Australia’s most employable graduates and are among the most sought after employees worldwide. The latest Global Employability University ranking, published by the Times Higher Education, rated ANU as Australia’s top university for getting a job for the fifth consecutive year.

ANU is a world-leading university in Australia’s capital city, Canberra, a world-leading centre for research, education and policy engagement. ANU counts more Nobel Laureates among staff and alumni than any other Australian university (including our Vice Chancellor!).

At ANU, you’ll get a world class qualification and an educational experience to help you stand out in the jobs market, here and overseas. Our students get internship experience in places like the Australian Parliament, the Australian Academy of Science, CSIRO and Geoscience Australia (to name a few). ANU have a global outlook in which we strongly encourage students to seek international experiences as part of their education and develop leadership skills, it’s our students that make us among the top most employable universities in the world.

For further information on what makes ANU graduates so employable, click here.

What’s happening at the University of Melbourne? News and Updates from Parkville

COURSE INFORMATION DAY

Course Information Day is a great opportunity to hear first-hand what STEM related opportunities exist at the University of Melbourne. The event will run on Monday 18 December, where you can ask questions about our Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics courses and have a tour of our campus and residential colleges.

The University of Melbourne offers through its Melbourne Model, the opportunity to create your own study path in over 41 different areas of Science through our Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Biomedical Science degrees like in areas such as Biology, Chemistry, Animal Health and Disease Management, Physics and Physiology.

Register to attend our Course Information Day here!

THRIVING AMID THE RISE OF THE MACHINES

Since 1948, futurists have warned about the impact automation could have on the human workforce, and now those changes are becoming a reality. Does it mean a re-think about what jobs humans can do better than machines?

Technology is destroying jobs, says Dr Greg Adamson, an expert in the social impact of advanced technology. There can no longer be any doubt about that hard fact of life in the 21st Century. The process is now inevitable, as automation, robotics and artificial intelligence embeds deeper into our society.

But with robots and automation proliferating – and with traditional jobs disappearing – what opportunities are there for humans in this new age?

WHY CAN’T WE CURE CANCER?

After heart disease, cancer is the second leading cause of death in the world – 8.8 million people lost their lives to cancer in 2015.

A generation ago, one in three people in the developed world were diagnosed with cancer; in some countries it is now approaching one in two. Low- and middle-income countries are also severely affected – with the majority of cancer cases now presenting themselves in these countries.

Why despite the great strides in medical knowledge, does the world continue to struggle in finding a cure for cancer? This episode of The PolicyShop addresses this question with two world leading experts.

Nobel Laureate, Dr Harold Varmus, currently the Lewis Thomas University Professor at Weill Cornell Medical College, who formally served as the Director of the National Institute of Health and as the Director of the National Cancer Institute in the United States and Associate Professor Sherene Loi, head of the Translational Breast Cancer Genomics Laboratory at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne join the host Professor Glyn Davis, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Melbourne.

You can find the podcast on iTunes or listen on our website, here!

ETHICS IN SCIENCE EVENT

With the rapid advancement of science, ethical dilemmas arise frequently. These range from the use of embryonic stem cells or animals in research, deciding how much power to give robots and artificial intelligence, how far to go with clinical trials in humans or using modern technology to decide whether one should turn off the life support of someone in coma.

Though science is not infallible, it is essential that scientific research is pursued with integrity and transparency and to the highest possible standards. Scientists owe this dedication and honesty to their pursuit of truth and to the tax-payer who both funds and is the beneficiary of the research.

At this forum, five internationally renowned scientists working in different fields will address some of these ethical issues and answer questions from the floor.

This Q&A type session will be moderated by Bernie Hobbs from the ABC (The New Inventors).

Register to attend our Ethics in Science forum here!

WHAT COULD SUSTAINABLE AUSTRALIAN CITIES LOOK LIKE IN 2040?

It’s 2040.

As you wake and look outside, things might not look hugely different to 2017 – there aren’t any hoverboards or sky highways – but Australian cities have managed to cut their greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent.

And how your day unfolds will look very different depending on how we reached this point.

How can Australia meet its cities energy needs whilst also meeting the country’s clean energy targets?

Read more about this article here!

Join the ANU Open Day Lab Coat Party

ANU Open Day – Saturday 26 August

Join us at ANU Open Day on Saturday 26 August and get a taste of life as an ANU science student. We will be offering a range of fun and interactive activities to help you determine your scientific future. Check out some of the activities below:

Lab Coat Party

Pick up your free lab coat and come along to our Lab Coat Party. You’ll get the chance to see our multi-million dollar facilities while trying out some hands-on experiments including visualising sound and robot programming. You may even make some new friends! Register here for your free lab coat.

STEM Avenue

If you’re looking for more, check out STEM Avenue. We’ll be serving up everything Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). Grab a bite to eat, dance to coded music and see some thrilling science and engineering demonstrations.

Meet a scientist

Meet our leading scientific minds (did we mention our Vice Chancellor is a Nobel Laureate in Physics?). Our academics will be available all day to discuss their passion for science and the study options available to you.

Read more about ANU Open Day

Monash – What’s happening at Monash University

Monash Open Day

What a fantastic day we had!  Plenty of hands-on demonstrations, informative talks and explosions. If you missed out – there’s another opportunity to visit us, just book a tour of the Science precinct during the upcoming school holidays at https://www.monash.edu/science/about/events.

In the meantime, please take a moment to watch some of the highlights from this year.

 

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How to Survive on Mars: The Science Behind the Human Exploration of Mars

Could you survive on Mars? Mars has always captivated the human imagination, and it’s the most explored planet in the solar system. Getting to Mars is relatively easy – but surviving once you get there is the real challenge. In this four-week course, you’ll learn the basic science to help you solve the problems Martian explorers will face around water, oxygen, food, energy and communications. The course is open to all students and will be particularly relevant for students interested in science, engineering and technology.

Course commences 7 August.

Monash short, online courses are offered for free through the FutureLearn platform. For more information and to register, visit https://www.futurelearn.com/partners/monash-university

UQ News – What’s on at the University of Queensland

Careers in Cloud Computing

Date – Thursday 31 August 2017

Time – 2.45 – 4.30pm

Location – The Playhouse, Women’s College, University of Queensland, St Lucia

Hear an address by Teresa Carlson, Vice President of Amazon Web Services,on the future of technology and the many high-demand careers now available  in cloud computing. If you are interested in attending, see your school Guidance Counsellor/Officer. RSVP through your school to school.liaison@uq.edu.au by Friday 25 August 2017.

 

QLD Science Contest

Registrations close 9 October

The 64th Queensland Science Contest is a great opportunity for students from Prep to Year 12 to have their scientific work judged and receive over $12,000 in awards and prizes. Registrations for student entries will be open until 9 October. Judging is on Saturday 14th October.

The University of Queensland supports the prestigious “Young Scientist of the Year” Award.  For information, contact: staq@staq.qld.edu.au

 

UQ St Lucia campus tours

Tours are a great way to become familiar with the campus. If you take your tour between 6 March – 30 October 2017 you can go into the draw to win a GoPro HERO5 Black, a Red Balloon Voucher and a UQ shirt, with a total  value of $800. To book a guided tour, visit UQ’s Future Students website.

Scholarships

Looking for Scholarships for 2018? Check out the range of scholarships at UQ. Visit https://scholarships.uq.edu.au/

 

What’s happening at Melbourne? News and Updates from Parkville

VTAC APPLICATIONS NOW OPEN

The VTAC timely course application period is now open for Year 12 students who are thinking of applying for a Tertiary Education place in 2018, closing on Friday September 28, 2017.

The University of Melbourne offers through its Melbourne Model, the opportunity to create your own study path in over 41 different areas of Science through our Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Biomedical Science degrees like in areas such as Biology, Chemistry, Animal Health and Disease Management, Physics and Physiology.

Learn more about how our Melbourne Model will immerse you in a different way of thinking here!

 

CAUGHT! THE CELL BEHIND A LUNG CANCER

For four years straight, medical researcher Clare Weeden would go on alert whenever lung surgery was underway anywhere across Melbourne. No matter the time, she would have to be ready in her lab to receive samples of fresh tissue as part of a project to isolate and research the stem cells that repair our lungs as they constantly breathe in contaminants from air pollution to cigarette smoke.

Basal stem cells are very quick at repairing DNA damage caused by inhaled chemicals such as those from cigarette smoke, but they are prone to making mistakes. It means that the more repair work they have to do, the greater the chance of a cancer-causing mutation.

“It isn’t definitive but the evidence is that lung basal stem cells are the likely cells of origin.” Claire says.

Find out more about this amazing research here!

 

CLIMATE CHANGE IN THE AGE OF TRUMP

Just as it seemed the world was starting to make serious efforts towards halting climate change, the United States – a country always considered essential to an effective international response – has elected a leader openly hostile towards climate science and climate action and who is already acting on that hostility.

What does the election of President Trump mean for worldwide attempts to limit warming to well below two degrees Celsius? Where can we find hope? What can Australians, particularly the intelligentsia, learn from his election and the local and international responses to his efforts to unravel US action on climate change? How can and should we respond?

Join us at Melbourne for this free lecture as part of the University’s lecture series ‘The Wednesday Lectures 2017: The Intelligentsia in The Age of Trump’ on Wednesday 30 August in our Public Lecture Theatre, Old Arts Building in Parkville.

Book your spot at our lecture series here!

 

BRUSH YOUR TEETH… IT COULD SAVE YOUR LIFE

Next time you’re racing out of the house without cleaning your teeth, think again. Neglecting your pearly whites can lead to a lot more than the odd filling.

It’s the simplest of actions, but brushing your teeth properly with a good fluoride toothpaste that produces plenty of white froth could save your life. Gum disease is extremely common. One in three adults and more than 50 per cent of Australians over the age of 65 have moderate to severe periodontitis, which is caused by an imbalance of bacteria in the mouth.

Led by University of Melbourne researchers, a global network of experts is working to improve the situation and potentially improve the health of millions of people.

“A lot of people just think they clean their teeth,” Professor Reynolds says. “But you actually have to clean the gum margin – it’s absolutely critical – and in between your teeth. Periodontitis starts in the gaps in between your teeth and around the gum. People are so focussed on tooth decay that they scrub the biting surfaces, which does nothing for periodontal disease.

“You should not only do your gums, in soft circular motions, you should clean the … top layer of your tongue as far back as you can go with the tooth brush and the tooth paste. Scrub it, froth it up. Because it’s that froth, the suds, that gets the biofilm … that harbours the bacteria.”

Read more about this announcement here!

NYSF STEM Explorer roams across the Adelaide landscape

The first National Youth Science Forum (NYSF) STEM Explorer Program was delivered successfully in July, and what a week it was! Running from 17-21 July in Adelaide, the Program was the first residential STEM camp in Australia for year 7-8 students. Feedback from the students, site visit providers and all involved has been overwhelmingly positive allowing a strong base to build for next year’s program.

The NYSF STEM Explorer Program was delivered as a partnership by the NYSF and South Australian Department of Education and Child Development (DECD).  Championed by the NYSF’s Science Patron, Professor Tanya Monro from the University of South Australia, and supported by the Hon Susan Close MP, Minister for Education and Child Development and also for Higher Education, the STEM Explorer Program was designed to stimulate students’ interest in the study of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

“The STEM Explorer Program is an ideal opportunity for our students to explore STEM on a deeper level and network with other students and experts who share similar interests and levels of passion in these subjects. There’s an identified need for more STEM graduates in the state, and NYSF have worked hard to tailor their specialist pilot program to profile a host of opportunities,” said Ms Close.

Picture: The Hon Susan Close MP speaking to the participants about the value of STEM.

Professor Tanya Monro believes STEM skills are critical to keep Australia moving as an innovative country. “STEM literacy is simply a core capability that Australian employers need. As an education provider, NYSF is proud to offer a new program which aims to attract new students to STEM and equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed.”

Picture: Professor Tanya Monro, NYSF Science Patron, getting to know the students in the Monro interest group.

A huge thank you to all of our supporters, who generously offered their time and resources to host the students and share with them their own science endeavours, research and passion for STEM:

  • The University of South Australia
  • The University of Adelaide – including the Why Waite program
  • Flinders University
  • the South Australian Museum
  • SciWorld
  • the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI)
  • the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI)
  • the South Australian Aquatic Sciences Centre (SAASC) and the
  • NRM Education – a program of the Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges Natural Resources Management Board.
  • Finally, a big thanks to Mylor Adventure Camp for being excellent and supportive hosts!

Most importantly we owe thanks to our funding partners SA DECD and the National Innovation and Science Agenda (NISA).

Read about the NYSF STEM Explorer Program highlights here.

NYSF Rotary District Chair, Stephen Lovison talks about student selections

Rotary, NYSF,

“I honestly had no idea the depth and breadth of the program”

From our larger cities to small regional towns in outback Australia, Rotarians have been super busy over the past few months promoting the National Youth Science Forum (NYSF) and conducting student selections for the NYSF 2018 Year 12 Program.

We spoke to NYSF Rotary District Chair (DC), Stephen Lovison from Sydney (D9675), about his involvement with Rotary and the NYSF Student Selection process.

Stephen first joined Rotary in 1999 as a Rotaractor and has been president of his Rotary Club, Como-Jannali, twice and served on numerous district boards.

“(I joined Rotary) primarily to give back to my local community and to assist overseas causes championed by Rotary International.  I like the fact that club members are local community leaders, but the beneficiaries of our volunteer work could be anywhere on the planet,” Stephen said.

“When the opportunity for NYSF District Chair became available I decided to try something different. I honestly had no idea the depth and breadth of the program until I got working on it – it’s been challenging and rewarding all the same.”

Rotary Liaison Officer on the NYSF Board, Rob Woolley, estimated that last year Rotarians volunteered more than 20,000 hours to the NYSF in promoting the program and conducting student selections.  Rotary has over 30,000 members, 1,100 clubs in 21 Districts throughout Australia, giving students from all corners of the country the opportunity to attend the NYSF.

“Rotary provides a massive logistic service when it comes to student identification, interview and selection. We rely on our network of business and community leaders to ensure the most suitable candidates are put forward (to district selection),” Stephen said.

This year the NYSF Year 12 Program will be expanding, allowing 600 students to attend in either Canberra or Brisbane.  Stephen added that the program provided a great opportunity for students who were interested in the STEM fields of study.

“Experience and exposure to the top minds and resources in STEM at the level NYSF provides is unrivalled. If you can get access to this as a young person and springboard your career in STEM because of this opportunity, go for it.”

Rotary, NYSF

This year the NYSF is offering 40 Equity Scholarships of $1000 each to students who may need assistance to attend the Year 12 Program.  Stephen believes this will encourage a more diverse range of students to apply.

“There are a number of schools and districts where, for various reasons, a program such as this may be deemed “out of reach”.  In keeping with Rotary and NYSF’s commitment to making the program viable to all students, the Equity Scholarship should hopefully open more doors for these students.”

And Stephen’s advice to students thinking of applying to the NYSF …

“Jump on the NYSF website and do some research, then make contact with your local Rotary Club. We are here to guide you through the process and answer any questions you may have.”

“In our district, we look for any student with a keen interest in the STEM fields, who is community and culturally open minded, and is willing to share and collaborate with their peers and mentors.”

Stephen said feedback from students who have participated in the NYSF Year 12 Program is a testament to its success and value.

“We have not had anything but praise for the NYSF team and the program itself from every returning student! The phrases “changed my life” “wonderful and challenging two weeks” “would recommend to anyone” feature heavily in the post-program reports sent to DCs.”

“In broad terms, alumni have gone on to various university courses and careers in science, healthcare, astronomy, and engineering. Several have joined Rotaract and/or Rotary and we’re glad to see that investment coming full circle.”

For more information about the NYSF Year 12 Program go to https://www.nysf.edu.au

ANU Event – Girls in Engineering and Technology Program (GET Set)

The ANU has the following event on offer to young women interested in engineering and technology with registrations now open.

Girls in Engineering and Technology Program (GET Set) is designed for female students in years 11 and 12, who wish to explore an education and career in engineering or technology.

This year The Australian National University (ANU) is celebrating the 10th GET Set event with a very special program of activities. This free, fun-filled day of non-competitive activities includes design, test and build tasks, lectures, demonstrations and more.

To find out more and register, visit the ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science website.

Date: Wednesday 19 July 2017

Time: 8.30am-4pm

Location: Ian Ross Building 31, The Australian National University