Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Griffith University students step into trimesters

New students starting at Griffith University this week will have their own unique place in the university’s history books.

Trimesters replaced semesters in 2017, and the first of three 12-week teaching periods commenced Feb. 27.

Griffith is the first Brisbane-based university to offer the trimester structure. So, what does this mean for you?

Griffith University students step into trimesters
Students starting at Griffith in 2017 will arrive in tandem with the trimester structure.

“Universities need to deliver flexible learning options more than ever before,” Professor Debra Henly, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic), said.

“Our new structure will allow students in many degrees greater flexibility to balance work and study by spreading their workload across three trimesters, or to accelerate and complete a standard three-year degree in two years.”

In many programs, students will also be able to commence their studies in Trimester 2 starting on July 3 or Trimester 3 commencing on Oct. 30.

The introduction of trimesters is a part of a suite of teaching innovations that Griffith University is implementing in 2017, focusing on preparing students for future career paths. Other initiatives include the introduction of a career portfolio, more opportunities for industry work placements and a unique program of internships with the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

Explore interests and aptitude

A foundation first year is also being introduced in 2017 for a number of disciplines, including business, commerce, engineering, education, information technology, photography science and fine art.

“This initiative will give students the best start at university. The added flexibility means they can explore their interests and aptitude early in their academic journey before committing to a specialised pathway,” Professor Henly sa​id​.

Bachelor of Education students, for example, won’t have to decide if they want to specialise in primary, secondary or special education teaching until their second year, after completing a first year with common core studies.

Students commencing fine art or photography at the QCA will be immersed in a new joint foundation year program that will foster skills and knowledge key to their artistic development throughout their degree and beyond.

Trimesters 1 and 2 will be compulsory for domestic and international students, with Trimester 3 optional. Not all programs will be offered in Trimester 3, and availability will depend on degree popularity.

UQ serves up new Food Science Innovation Precinct

Australia’s food-centric culture—illustrated by the popularity of dining out, healthy eating and television cooking shows—will benefit from a new $1-million facility at the University of Queensland.

UQ is serving up a smorgasbord of opportunity for the food industry with the opening of the new Food Science Innovation Precinct at the St Lucia campus.

 UQ serves up new Food Science Innovation Precinct
Study food science at the new UQ Food Science Innovation Precinct (Photo credit: UQ)

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (External Engagement) Professor Iain Watson said UQ had worked hard to position itself as a research powerhouse in areas such as agriculture, land management, genetics and chemistry, which all feed into food innovation.

“UQ has the largest university food research capability in Australia and ranks at number seven in the world for agriculture research,” he said.

“The Food Science Innovation Precinct is the icing on the cake. It will give students access to world-class training, innovations and facilities, and will ultimately help food companies create more innovative products.”

The Food Science Innovation Precinct has two state-of-the-art laboratories—a food-grade laboratory and an analytical laboratory for chemical and microbiological analysis.

Master of Food Science students will have the opportunity to work on a range of projects, including
  • cholesterol-lowering baked goods and dairy foods
  • ultra-low-fat cheese that tastes like full-fat cheese
  • 3D printed fruits
  • fresher milk produced without heat pasteurisation
  • new Omega-3 and probiotic foods and drinks
UQ Business School Entrepreneur in Residence and UniQuest Commercial Director (Food) Cameron Turner said the new facilities would allow students to work on research projects in collaboration with food companies.

“The food industry in Australia is rapidly growing and evolving, largely driven by consumers who are willing to pay for taste and convenience and are better informed about health and nutrition through media channels,” Mr Turner said.

“There’s also an increased awareness of functional foods and the importance of our gut microbiota, and rising opportunities in Asia, particularly China, for Australian-made foods.

“All of these factors create excellent opportunities for food manufacturers, retailers and our researchers.”

UQ announced in November a project to investigate if friendly bacteria could be introduced to bagged salad leaves to help ward off salmonella and listeria outbreaks.

UQ Master of Food Science and Technology

The Master of Food Science and Technology will cover the integrative disciplines of food science and food technology. In this program, you will gain a comprehensive theoretical and practical knowledge within fields of food science and food technology, and you will have the opportunity to apply these in either a research project or an industry placement.

Program: Master of Food Science and Technology
Location: St Lucia Campus, Brisbane
Duration: 1.5 years
Semester intakes: February and July
Application deadline: May 30 (July intake); November 29 (February intake)

Prerequisites: Bachelor degree in food science, food technology, science or engineering (in food science or technology) or an approved discipline. GPA of 5 or above on a 7-point scale.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Why choose to study veterinary science at the University of Queensland?

The UQ School of Veterinary Science is located on the Gatton campus of the University of Queensland. This campus represents Queensland’s premier hub for animal and agricultural training and is 100 km west of Brisbane, Queensland’s capital city and a major national and international transport hub.

Why choose to study veterinary science at the University of Queensland?
UQ Vet Centre at the Gatton campus

The veterinary teaching facilities on the Gatton Campus were built in 2010 and are among the best in the southern hemisphere. The University of Queensland Gatton campus provides access to all animal species and clinics and teaching facilities are located at the one site, so there is no need to switch between campuses!

Approximately 24% of students in each year of the program are international students, hailing from a diverse range of home countries, including Canada. Modern veterinary practice must have a global perspective, and the  Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Hons) curriculum has been designed to offer internationally aligned content and methods of teaching, preparing students for professional roles in whichever region they choose.

UQ and the School of Veterinary Science demonstrate their excellence in a number of ways, not least being highly ranked on global tertiary education quality indicators. The latest QS Global Employability Ranking placed UQ within the top 5 universities in Australia, and within the top 60 internationally, with respect to employability of its graduates.

The school has full accreditation with the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), and with both the Australasian Veterinary Boards Council and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in the UK, enabling UQ graduates to also practice in North America, Australia, New Zealand, UK, Hong Kong and most of Asia.

Studying veterinary science at the University of Queensland

Since its first intake of students in 1936, the UQ School of Veterinary Science has been recognized for a sustained record of excellence in teaching and learning across the veterinary disciplines and the quality of its research. The school is based at a purpose-built site with first-rate facilities for teaching and research and access to horses, cattle, pigs and poultry.

Program: Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Honours)
Location: Gatton, Queensland
Semester intake: February
Duration: 5 years
Application deadline: General application deadline of November 30; however, late applications may be accepted. It is strongly recommended that students apply a minimum of three months prior to the program’s start date.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Get your dentistry admissions questions answered on March 2!

Interested in applying to dentistry? Which Australian dental schools accept students directly from high school? Which schools require the DAT? Are your grades competitive?

Get your dentistry admissions questions answered on March 2!
Meet OzTREKK Dental Schools Admissions Officer Adam Smith


Get all your dentistry admissions questions answered on March 2 at the Australian Dental School Info Session!


The University of Ottawa Pre-Dental Club is partnering with OzTREKK Australian Dental Schools Admissions Officer Adam Smith to discuss everything you need to know about applying to a dentistry program in Australia!


Australian Dental School Info Session

Date: Thursday, March 2, 2017
Time: 7 – 9 p.m.
Location: Room 285, 129 Louis Pasteur, University of Ottawa

RSVP: For more information about the event, please email the University of Ottawa Pre-dental Club at uopredentalclub@gmail.com.

About Australian dental schools

In Australia, there are two distinct pathways to studying dentistry, both of which lead you to become a dentist.

Graduate Entry: Some Australian dental schools offer a graduate-entry dental program. This pathway is exactly the same as in Canada, where you first have to complete an undergraduate degree, such as a Bachelor of Science, and then you apply to a four-year dental program.

Undergraduate Entry: Some Australian dental schools allow you to enter into a dental program directly from high school or with a partially completed undergraduate degree. These undergraduate degrees are typically five years.

University of Sydney Law School Juris Doctor FAQs

What is the difference between the Bachelor of Laws (LLB) and the Juris Doctor (JD) offered at the University of Sydney?

University of Sydney Law School Juris Doctor FAQs
Learn more about studying at Sydney Law School

Both the Bachelor of Laws (LLB) and the Juris Doctor (JD) are law degrees which upon their completion enable you to apply in your jurisdiction to practice as a lawyer. The main difference between the two law degrees is that the LLB is intended for those applicants who have not completed an undergraduate university degree. Their highest level of qualification is high school.

The JD is simply the graduate-entry version of the LLB. You must have completed an undergraduate degree before you can commence the JD. If you have not completed an undergraduate degree, then you apply to the LLB.

When can I commence my studies in the JD program at Sydney Uni?
The Juris Doctor  program commences in the first semester of each year, which is in late February/early March.

Do I need to sit the LSAT to apply to Sydney Law School?
No, the LSAT is not a requirement and is not assessed. Even if you have completed the LSAT, it will not be assessed as part of the application process.

Which electives do I study?
You will have a wide range of electives from which to choose. There will be a strong emphasis on international law and you may choose some units from the Sydney Law School‘s extensive postgraduate coursework units of study. You will complete 7 electives and will be able to choose from 3 tables of electives.

About the University of Sydney Law School Juris Doctor

The University of Sydney Law School is Australia’s first. Since its inception, it has been at the forefront of developments associated with both the teaching and research of law. Its strong sense of commitment to the fundamentals of law is combined with a commitment to innovation and the exploration of issues at the cutting edge.

The Sydney JD comprises the core legal subjects required throughout the world for professional accreditation coupled with the study of a wide range of elective subjects which allows advanced learning in both specialized fields and law in general. Teaching and learning methodology includes a wide range of formats to allow individual choice, a deep understanding of the law, independent research and the development of the skills and ethics inherent in modern professional practice.

Program: Juris Doctor (JD)
Location: Sydney, New South Wales
Duration: 3 years
Semester intake: March
Application deadline: Candidates are strongly encouraged to apply a minimum of three months prior to the program start date.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Introducing the new UQ School of Earth and Environmental Sciences

Resources and energy, climate change, urbanisation, population growth, conservation and sustainability will be areas of focus for a new University of Queensland school.

Introducing the new UQ School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Professor Aitchison is head of the new UQ School of Earth and Environmental Sciences (Photo: UQ)
The UQ School of Earth and Environmental Sciences came into being on Jan. 1 and now combines UQ’s School of Earth Sciences and the School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management.

Professor Jonathan Aitchison, who will head the new school, said it would be an interdisciplinary powerhouse of academic expertise, developing practical solutions to big issues.

“The school will give greater breadth and depth to the study of earth and environmental sciences, greatly benefitting students, strengthening research capacity, and will provide greater disciplinary coherence and opportunity,” said Professor Aitchison, the Head of UQ’s School of Earth and Environmental Sciences.

“It makes sense to bring earth and environmental sciences together in the university.

“The new school is a recognition of the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of geological and geographical sciences, environmental management, coastal processes, urban planning and safety science.”

Professor Aitchison said UQ had a strong international reputation for excellence in earth and environmental sciences.

It ranks number 1 in Australia in life sciences in the Times Higher Education Ranking and number 12 globally, number 32 internationally in geography, and is in the world’s top 100 Earth and Marine Sciences institutions in the 2016 QS rankings by subject.

“The combined staff of the new school are recognised as experts in their fields,” Professor Aitchison said.

“They conduct pure and applied research with strong links to our industry, government and university partners who have provided excellent support over many years.

“In addition, our people have a strong reputation for quality teaching of undergraduate and postgraduate students in all discipline areas across the new school.”

Professor Aitchison said integrated teams of earth scientists, physical and social scientists, environmental management specialists, health and safety experts, and urban planners would work together to generate new knowledge and opportunities for further discovery.

Current collaborative research projects and consulting pieces would continue as usual and new projects would begin as funding and support becomes available.

“By providing a new academic structure for these related disciplines we will provide opportunities to improve end-to-end delivery of services and research outcomes,” he said.

“This benefits industries, government, university partners, and communities, and continues availability of state-of-the-art facilities for industry and research project work.”

Professor Aitchison is a geologist and an expert in plate tectonics, palaeontology and geo-microbiology.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Melbourne physiotherapy school suggests online treatment could help chronic knee pain sufferers

Researchers at the University of Melbourne are calling on health insurers and government to support new remotely delivered treatment models—including Skype consultations—for people suffering chronic knee pain.

Melbourne physiotherapy school suggests online treatment could help chronic knee pain sufferers
A study participant talks with a therapist in an online consultation (Photo: University of Melbourne)

They have developed an online treatment that has dramatically improved symptoms and functioning for people suffering knee osteoarthritis, the main cause of chronic knee pain.

Research trial findings published recently in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, suggest online delivery is the key to greatly improve patient access to effective non-drug treatments.

Knee osteoarthritis is estimated to affect nearly a million Australians, especially people aged over 45 years, and those who are overweight or obese.

Self-management, including exercise, is critical for minimising the impact of this condition, which has no cure.

Professor Kim Bennell, of the Melbourne Department of Physiotherapy, said participants in the IMPACT project had seven Skype sessions with a physiotherapist to learn home exercises, and completed an online pain-coping skills training program over three months.

Compared to a control group, who only had access to online educational materials, they reported significantly greater improvements in pain, physical functioning and quality of life at three and nine months.

“Currently many people with this condition are not receiving key treatments but are relying on drugs, which have serious side effects, and costly surgery,” Professor Bennell said.

“About 30,000 Australians have knee replacement surgery each year, so helping people to better self manage can significantly reduce the need for surgery and drugs.”

Professor Bennell said the traditional model of visiting a health professional in person was not practical for patients from rural or remote areas, or with mobility problems.

“The patients and physiotherapists found Skype empowering, convenient and enjoyable,” Professor Bennell said.

Professor Bennell is urging the private and public health care systems to consider expansion of services to include online treatment delivery models that promote self management of chronic knee pain via exercise and pain coping skills training.

In December, the program, funded by the NHMRC, won the Research Into Action category in the VicHealth annual health promotion awards.

About the Melbourne Doctor of Physiotherapy

The Melbourne Doctor of Physiotherapy is Australia’s first three-year entry to practice graduate master’s-level program. Physiotherapy graduates will have the opportunity to pursue a career in a range of health settings, including hospitals, private practice, sporting and rehabilitation facilities, community organizations or as an advisor to government or industry bodies. This degree provides opportunities for pursuing employment globally.

Program: Doctor of Physiotherapy
Location: Melbourne, Victoria
Semester intake: February
Duration: 3 years
Application deadline: TBA. For the 2017 intake, deadlines were June 2, 2016 (first round) and July 28, 2016 (second round).

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

UQ offers more free dental care in new alliance

The University of Queensland will help deliver more free public dental care thanks to a new partnership with the State Government.

The alliance between UQ and Metro North Hospital and Health Service (MNHHS) will give an extra 8,000 eligible public patients with access to dental treatment at the Oral Health Centre in Herston.

SUQ offers more free dental care in new alliance
The UQ Oral Health Centre at Herston (Photo credit: UQ)

UQ Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences Executive Dean Professor Bruce Abernethy said the alliance was an integrated operation that would begin with the amalgamation of UQ and MNHHS teaching, research and clinical activities at the Oral Health Centre in January 2017.

“UQ will be responsible for the academic function of the alliance, providing evidence-based teaching and clinically focused research, while Metro North will be responsible for clinical service delivery and clinical supervision of students,” Professor Abernethy said.

“Brisbane Dental Hospital will be relocated in a staged fashion from its current Turbot Street location to our state-of-the-art facility in the Herston Health Precinct throughout the year.”

Head of UQ Dental School Professor Pauline Ford said the partnership was another opportunity for dental students to improve the quality of life of those in need.

“Our students are committed to providing healthcare to those who require it most,” Professor Ford said.

“Research assistant and oral health therapist Nicole Cockburn organised Dental Rescue Week for youth experiencing homelessness earlier this year, and our existing partnership with Ozcare gives free dental care to men in South Brisbane hostels.”

Professor Ford has spent much of her professional life researching and enhancing dental care for the disadvantaged.

“Both personally and professionally, I am proud to announce that one of the main tenets of the alliance is the focus on providing dental treatment for the Brisbane North area’s most vulnerable population,” Professor Ford said.

The model for the alliance is comparable to arrangements in other states, such as the Westmead Centre for Oral Health (University of Sydney), The Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne (University of Melbourne), and the Adelaide Dental Hospital (University of Adelaide).

Studying at the UQ School of Dentistry

UQ Dental School’s dentistry program has been in operation for more 75 years, and is one of Australia’s longest-running dental programs and also its highest-ranked dental program. The Bachelor of Dental Science (BDSc) (Honours) program which provides students with the knowledge, skills and attitude they require in order to become competent practitioners of dentistry. These include the application of scientific principles to the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of oral diseases and abnormalities.

Program: Bachelor of Dental Science
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Semester intake: February
Duration: 5 years
Application deadline: October 30 each year

Friday, February 17, 2017

Studying at UQ Pharmacy is more than just counting pills

Studying pharmacy is more than just counting pills. Meet current UQ Pharmacy student, Sakina, who applied through OzTREKK in 2013. In Part 1 of his blog, Sakina offers advice for anyone considering studying pharmacy in Australia.

My name is Sakina. I am currently in my third year of pharmacy at UQ. I was born and raised in Canada and made my big move to Australia two and a half years ago. I am a chemistry nerd at heart so pharmacy seemed the best fitting career for me. I aim to be a high achiever but I don’t like to get consumed by classes or work, so in my downtime, I love to explore the outdoors such as going on hikes, to the beach, traveling, going on road trips, and hanging with friends. Fashion is another passion of mine so that is another aspect of my life that I really want to continue to develop.

Studying at UQ Pharmacy is more than just counting pills
Former OzTREKK student Sakina enjoying the UQ Bachelor of Pharmacy program (Photo credit: UQ)
I have found that sometimes uni students become so obsessed with their grades and results that they forget to focus their attention on the key experiences which are designed to develop them into a valued professional.

When you first come to uni you realise very quickly that university and high school are two completely different beasts. There are a range of changes which make them so vastly different and it can feel intimidating at first, but trust me when I say this: you can achieve anything you put your mind to. Patience and hard work are some of the key elements which will help you to achieve your goals. Regardless of the field of study you are in, communication and social skills are essential when it comes to life in general, so best to get good at this early on. These are the factors which many students forget about. They think that achieving straight high distinctions will lead to their future success, when in reality it really doesn’t guarantee anything.

Pharmacy is one of those fields where these skills are more essential than you may think. Regardless of whether you choose to become a hospital or community pharmacist, you will be communicating with patients on a daily basis. It is important that you learn how to communicate with patients in the most simplistic, informative, and non-frightening manner, especially when it comes to medication administration and usage. As a healthcare professional, patient care should be at the core of your profession, which is why the UQ Pharmacy program places so much emphasis on this.

Stay tuned for part 2 of Sakina’s story: Placements

Are you interested in studying pharmacy at the University of Queensland?

Program: Bachelor of Pharmacy
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Semester intake: February
Duration: 3–4 years, depending on candidate’s education background
Application deadline: Generally November 29 each year; however, late applications may be accepted.

Entry Requirements
Applicants are required to have completed their high school diploma. Applicants should have completed Grade 12 English, Chemistry and Math to meet program prerequisites. If you have commenced or completed a university degree or any post-secondary studies, your most recent studies will be assessed in terms of your grades. If you have not completed the necessary prerequisite subjects in your post-secondary studies, your high school transcripts will then be assessed for prerequisite subjects.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Sydney speech pathology researchers receive $6.3 million for internet-based stuttering clinic

In their third consecutive NHMRC Program Grant University of Sydney Speech Pathology School’s Professor Mark Onslow, Associate Professor Ann Packman, and Associate Professor Ross Menzies have been awarded $6.3 million to establish the world’s first internet-based clinic for stuttering.

Sydney speech pathology researchers receive $6.3 million for internet-based stuttering clinic
Professor Mark Onslow (Photo: University of Sydney)
The stuttering e-Clinic will service all the needs of child, adolescent and adult patients affected by stuttering located throughout Australia and eventually the world. The internet-based clinic model will provide economical, scalable and translatable stuttering treatments that will, for the first time, provide a means to adequately manage the public health problem of stuttering.

“The great advantage of this e-Clinic is that it can be accessed by anyone without having to visit a specialist speech pathologist or psychologist,” said Professor Onslow.

“In many cases, standalone internet treatment is effective for children and adults who stutter, and for them, having access to that internet e-Clinic, plus short weekly phone or email contact with a speech pathologist or psychologist, will be enough to treat their stuttering.”

The e-Clinic will mean that only patients who do not respond to this new type of online treatment will need to visit a clinic in person to see a speech pathologist or psychologist.

“The establishment of the e-Clinic will improve the lives of children with speech difficulties all over Australia and is an extremely cost effective way to deal with stuttering.

“We are particularly proud to put have put speech pathology up there in the running with oncology and immunology for this pool of funding” Professor Onslow said.

The funding is part of $125 million in research grants presented by the new Federal Government Health Minister Greg Hunt. The aim of these grants is to provide support for teams of high calibre researchers to pursue broad based, multi-disciplinary and collaborative research addressing complex problems.

University of Sydney Speech Pathology School

In common with other departments at the University of Sydney, the discipline of speech pathology promotes students’ development of generic  communication and teamwork skills, as well as discipline-specific knowledge and skills. The course is designed to promote self-direction and encourages the graduates to have a sense of their own individuality and creativity. The university offers a two-year, graduate-entry Master of Speech Language Pathology program. It is intended for students coming from an undergraduate degree in any field, who wish to gain the requirements to become a speech pathologist.

Program: Master of Speech Language Pathology
Location: Sydney, New South Wales
Semester intake: March each year
Duration: 2 years
Application Deadline: TBA. Applications for the 2017 intake closed October 14, 2016.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Macquarie University opens new City Campus in Sydney

Macquarie University is expanding its city presence, with a new purpose-built teaching and meeting facility that opened January 2017 in the heart of Sydney’s CBD. The design of the campus strives to capture the university’s global business and innovation outlook.

This new consolidated campus offers a unique opportunity for the alignment, collaboration, and forging of a premium postgraduate experience for all of Macquarie’s city students, with an improved learning environment, networking opportunities, and innovative teaching space.

Macquarie University opens new City Campus in Sydney
Level 23 (Photo credit: Macquarie University)

The new purpose-built, state-of-the-art teaching facility, located in the heart of Sydney’s CBD at 123 Pitt Street, is a short stroll from Wynyard Station and seconds away from leading global financial institutions.

The Macquarie University City Campus will host a selection of world-class postgraduate programs and units taught by industry experts from the Macquarie Applied Finance Centre, Faculty of Business and Economics, and the Macquarie Graduate School of Management.

The programs available to international students:
  • Master of Accounting specialisation in CPA
  • Master of Banking and Finance
  • Master of Commerce with a specialisation in Finance
  • Master of Business Administration
  • Master of Applied Finance
The City Campus will prove popular with students whose preference is to experience a bustling location in the city of Sydney, yet who still value an intimate and supportive learning environment.

University of Melbourne joins Epilepsy Centre Without Walls in $28m global research push

People with epilepsy acquired following brain trauma are the focus of a new $28 million global push for a long-awaited research breakthrough to develop treatments that for the first time could prevent or mitigate this disabling and potentially life-threatening condition. The University of Melbourne, in partnership with the Royal Melbourne Hospital, is the only Australian institution to take part in the project, funded by one of the largest grants to date awarded by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) for research into the elusive condition.

Melbourne joins Epilepsy Centre Without Walls in $28m global research push
People with epilepsy acquired following brain trauma are the focus of a new $28 million global push (Photo: University of Melbourne)

Some 250,000 Australians suffer from epilepsy, the causes of which range from tumours to infections, genetics, hemorrhages or stroke, in addition to brain trauma.

Principal Investigator neurologist Terry O’Brien said epilepsy caused by traumatic brain injury, the major cause of epilepsy in people aged 15–24, is harder to predict and control than many other forms of epilepsy.

“Up to 20 per cent of people who’ve had a traumatic brain injury will develop epilepsy, yet researchers know very little about why, and have no way to prevent or mitigate it,” Professor O’Brien said.

“It’s the nasty sting in the tail for people who’ve got through a difficult rehabilitation, only to be hit by their first seizure just when they think they’re on the mend—anywhere from six months to two years after they were first injured.

“More than a third of these patients’ seizures can’t be controlled by drugs.”

Professor O’Brien—who is the James Stewart Chair of Medicine and Head of the Department of Medicine (Royal Melbourne Hospital) at The University of Melbourne—said the key to Melbourne’s appeal to be invited to be part of this international research collaboration was its location in the Parkville Precinct.

“Being in the Parkville Precinct will enable clinicians and researchers from disciplines such as neuroscience, electrophysiology, imaging, bioinformatics and molecular biology to work very closely together, at the Melbourne Brain Centre and the Royal Melbourne Trauma Centre and ICU.”

The project, one of three NIH Epilepsy Centres without Walls, will be led by researchers at five institutions—the University of Melbourne, the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California, and the University of Eastern Finland.

About Melbourne Medical School

The Melbourne Medical School is part of the Faculty of Medicine Dentistry and Health Sciences. It is the oldest medical school in Australia and internationally renowned for global leadership in teaching and training, health research, policy and practice. The school encompasses all major fields of medicine and rural health.

Renowned for global leadership in health research, policy and practice, the University of Melbourne educates more health professionals than any other university in Australia.

Program: Doctor of Medicine (MD)
Location: Melbourne, Victoria
Semester intake: February
Duration: 4 years
Application deadline: TBA. For the 2017 intake, the deadline was June 23, 2016.

The Melbourne MD is a four-year, graduate-entry medical program that builds on the University of Melbourne’s reputation for excellence in teaching and research. It enables students to become outstanding medical practitioners who will excel as world-class leaders in their chosen field.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

UQ sport science ranks in global top 5

The UQ School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences has ranked 4th and 5th in the world for sport science in two highly respected global rankings systems.

This January, UQ placed 4th in CEOWORLD Magazine’s World’s Top Universities for Sport Science In 2016.

UQ sport science ranks in global top 5
UQ School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences has ranked 4th and 5th in the world for sport science! (Photo: UQ)

Head of School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Professor Andrew Cresswell said the accolade was a reflection of UQ’s dedication to being a world-leader in sport and exercise science education and research.

“Our strong commitment to excellence in teaching and research is paramount to our success, and permeates everything we do,” Professor Cresswell said.

“We aspire to be at the forefront of learning and strive to ensure students meet the needs of the sport science industry, are job-ready, and equipped with the skills and knowledge to succeed in their chosen careers.”

The ranking is based on six key indicators of quality, including academic reputation, admission eligibility, job placement rate, recruiter feedback, specialisation, and global reputation and influence.

It comes one month after UQ ranked 5th in the ShanghaiRanking’s Global Ranking of Sport Science Schools and Departments 2016.

The ShanghaiRanking assessed key areas of research performance, including the number of papers published in top sport science journals and the number of citations of articles.

Professor Cresswell said the school’s performance was led by outstanding teaching and research staff, and work being undertaken in the research centres.

“To be rated among the very best in the world by two highly respected ranking systems, and to score higher than many larger universities with celebrated kinesiology and human movement departments, is a huge accolade,” Professor Cresswell said.

Why study the UQ Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Sciences (Honours)?

This program will ignite your interest in the complexities of maintaining an active, healthy human body and allow you to make an essential contribution to well-being, rehabilitation and performance. This program focuses on understanding how to enhance human performance, how the body responds to exercise and physical activity, and how to conduct research which could help build healthier communities and stronger athletes.

Career opportunities are varied and may include prescribing and delivering exercise and physical activity programs in the fitness industry, developing strength and conditioning programs to assist elite athletes and sporting teams, delivering workplace health promotion and executive health management programs, or conducting diagnostic measurements (cardiac, sleep, respiratory or neurophysiology) in hospitals or other clinical services.

Program: Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Sciences (Honours)
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Semester intake: February
Program duration: 4 years
Application deadline: November 29, 2017

Monday, February 13, 2017

Apply to the new Monash University medical program!

The new combined Bachelor of Medical Science Doctor of Medicine degree has replaced the Monash University Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (Honours) MBBS program as of 2017 entry. The Bachelor of Medical Science and Doctor of Medicine (MD) is an internationally recognised, higher-level qualification and has been accredited by the Australian Medical Association.

Apply to the Monash University medical program!
Learn more about the Monash University medical program!

This new Monash medical program has been designed in close consultation with doctors, health care professionals and leaders in the health and research sectors in order to give students the scientific background and clinical expertise needed for a successful career as a doctor.

Students who commence the Monash MD will undertake a Scholarly Intensive Project in the final year of the course. Medical students will undertake traditional research activities as well having the opportunity to increase learning opportunities around clinical and professional practice.

Monash will continue to offer the 5-year direct-entry medical program (from high school), as well as the 4-year graduate-entry program, with the same number of places available in both courses.

Interview Dates for Canadian applicants
September 4 & 5, 2017 (Toronto)
September 7 & 8, 2017 (Vancouver)

Dates are subject to change.

Program: Bachelor of Medical Science Doctor of Medicine (undergraduate entry)
Location: Clayton campus, Melbourne
Semester intake: February 2018
Duration: 5 years
Application deadline: July 21, 2017

Program: Bachelor of Medical Science Doctor of Medicine (graduate entry)
Location: Gippsland Campus, Churchill, Victoria (approx. 2 hours southeast of Melbourne)
Semester intake: February 2018
Duration: 4 years
Application deadline: July 21, 2017

Friday, February 10, 2017

Sydney School of Veterinary Science warns cats at risk from deadly virus outbreak

Pet owners and vets are being warned against complacency after the resurgence of a deadly feline panleukopenia virus (FPV)—almost eradicated 40 years ago by vaccinations—was confirmed by Australian tests recently.

The once vanquished viral disease feline panleukopenia has caused the death of scores of cats in Sydney in recent weeks, investigations into the outbreak by researchers from the University of Sydney show. The symptoms are fever, lethargy and loss of appetite, followed by vomiting and diarrhea. In severe infections cats can die suddenly with no signs.

Sydney School of Veterinary Science warns cats at risk from deadly virus outbreak
Owners are encouraged to get their pets vaccinated
Sydney veterinarian Dr Tanya Stephens, owner of Haberfield Veterinary clinic, said she had not diagnosed a case for 40 years. That was until her practice diagnosed the disease in four rescued stray kittens. The kittens died after a short illness.

The disease has also struck three animal shelters in western Sydney, resulting in the deaths of more than 50 cats. Affected cats were mostly kittens that had not yet been vaccinated, or were not fully vaccinated.

DNA sequencing by University of Sydney Professor Vanessa Barrs has confirmed that the strain of virus causing the outbreak in Australia is feline panleukopenia virus (FBV). It coincides with several large outbreaks of parvovirus in dogs in NSW, around the Shoalhaven area as well as the Riverina region and Tamworth.

“The message for pet owners is make sure your dogs and cats are vaccinated against these deadly infections,” said Professor Barrs, from the Sydney School of Veterinary Science and Marie Bashir Institute. “Disease in cats is caused by parvoviruses, small DNA viruses. The main one is feline panleukopenia virus but parvoviruses that infect dogs can also cause the disease in cats.”

However, there is no risk for humans as the disease cannot be passed on to them.

Feline panleukopenia virus, also known as feline enteritis, is a deadly viral infection of cats that was first discovered more than 100 years ago. With the uptake of vaccinations, disease virtually disappeared from Australia in the mid-1970s.

The current outbreak is particularly dangerous because it occurs in the middle of summer, when there are larger numbers of kittens around, which are most susceptible to the disease.

The research by Professor Barrs and her colleagues indicates that current vaccines should be effective.

“The current outbreak seems to be caused by a lack of mass vaccination, especially in shelter-housed cats,” Professor Barrs said.

“The disease had previously re-emerged in Melbourne cat shelters a few years ago but despite warnings, cats have not been vaccinated in many shelters because their risk of disease was perceived to be lower than in dogs, when in reality the risk to cats is high.

“When less than 70 per cent of the population is vaccinated, there is a perfect storm for the emergence of a disease epidemic. The current outbreak is a timely reminder that maintaining immunity in populations of animals where effective vaccines are available is essential.”

Sydney School of Veterinary Science

The Sydney School of Veterinary Science is the nation’s premier place to receive training in veterinary medicine. Ranked first in Australia and 9th in the world for veterinary science in the 2016 QS World University Rankings, Sydney has also been given a maximum score of 5 in the Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) federal government scheme for the veterinary sciences field of research.

In the Sydney DVM, teaching is research-driven to ensure students will learn from the latest developments and advances in evidence-based practice, veterinary science research, animal behaviour and welfare science and veterinary public health. Students will benefit from a fully integrated learning curriculum with clinical exposure, clinical skills training and animal handling commencing in the first semester and throughout the course.

Program: Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM)
Location: Sydney, New South Wales
Semester intake: March
Program duration: 4 years
Application deadline: TBA. for the 2017 intake, the application deadline was September 14, 2016.

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Moving your family to Australia

Although not applicable to everyone, some of our students inquire about bringing family members when applying to study in Australia. Many Canadians wish to fulfill their career goals after getting married, having kids, or both. There are a lot of things to think about when you consider moving your entire family to Australia. Let’s get started!

Student visa selection
Declare all family members on your application, even if they do not plan to travel with you to Australia. Gather documents such as birth certificates, passports, marriage certificates, proof of financial capacity, etc.

Moving your family to Australia
Your Australian adventure awaits

Understanding OSHC
If you’re taking a partner or children, you’ll have to consider their health coverage as well. You do have choice in your Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) provider. Visit OSHC Australia for more information.

Organizing accommodation
You will most likely need short-term accommodation before you settle into your own place. Try to stay somewhere close to where you plan to live permanently. This way, you will get a feel for the place before you commit to a long-term rental or property purchase.

Ensure your will is in order, obtain references, medical and vaccination records and collect professional and personal contact details. Don’t forget to contact your provincial government to let them know you’ll be leaving the country for an extended period of time.

School options for the kids
Contact the schools you have short-listed, and explain when you are coming to Australia. Discuss their curriculum, fees and support fees, and remember to ask about additional expenses such as school uniforms. Also inquire about term dates.

Packing and shipping is time consuming and costly. If you are moving to Australia don’t pack anything that will be confiscated or hold up your goods in quarantine unnecessarily, so be sure to visit the Australian Government’s Arriving in Australia – Declare it (http://www.agriculture.gov.au/travelling/arriving-in-australia)

Applications for the Macquarie Doctor of Physiotherapy program are still open!

Thinking of applying to the Macquarie Doctor of Physiotherapy program?

The Macquarie Doctor of Physiotherapy program is the first in New South Wales. Students will graduate with advanced clinical skills developed in more than 1,000 hours of supervised clinical practice. And with business, management and leadership training, you’ll be ready launch a fulfilling career as a physiotherapist in a variety of settings.

Learning within state-of-the-art purpose-built facilities, Macquarie DPT students collaborate with leading researchers and respected clinicians in Macquarie University Hospital and the university’s other clinical partners to promote the health and well-being across the lifespan.

Program: Doctor of Physiotherapy
Location: Sydney, New South Wales
Duration: 3 years
Next available intake: July 2017
Application deadline: February 23, 2017

Entry requirements
1. Completion of a bachelor’s degree with about a 65% average or above. This is the minimum academic standing needed to apply and does not guarantee admission. The starting point to a competitive average would be at least a 70% cumulative average or higher; however, competitiveness changes each year depending on the quality and quantity of each year’s applicants.

2. Prerequisite courses in the following areas:
  • Human Anatomy
  • Human Physiology (Cell and Systems)
  • Psychology
  • Research Methods
The courses in the following subject areas are desired, yet not mandatory:
  • Biomechanics
  • Pharmacology
  • Exercise physiology
  • Pathophysiology
  • Motor learning and performance
  • Neuroscience
Selection Process
Once entry requirements for each candidate have been met the following processes occurs:
  • Candidates will be ranked on their academic merit based on their highest GPA for any tertiary qualification.
  • Secondary level of consideration will be given to students who have completed desired tertiary units of study.
  • The highest ranked candidates will be offered a place.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Exploring occupational therapy as a career option

What exactly is occupational therapy and how does it differ from physio?

Exploring occupational therapy as a career option
UQ offers a Master of Occupational Therapy Studies program! (Photo: UQ)

Unlike physiotherapy, which evaluates and helps to maintain and restore physical function, occupational therapy helps to solve the problems that interfere with a person’s ability to do everyday things, like dressing, bathing, washing dishes, eating, and other tasks most of us take for granted. Occupational therapy can also help to prevent a problem or minimize its effects.

When do people see occupational therapists?

Usually, occupational therapists are sought when a disability, injury, illness or other problem limits someone’s abilities to care for himself, participate in work, or just enjoy regular leisure time or hobbies. These skills and regular activities are so important to us as people that they often describe how we view ourselves—we identify with our jobs and activities. When disability or injury prevents someone from being able to accomplish a simple, everyday task such as buttoning a shirt, it can affect how he or she feels about himself.

That’s where an occupational therapist comes in.

What do occupational therapists do?

Occupational therapists are highly trained health-care professionals, and they define an occupation as much more than a chosen career. Occupation refers to everything that people do during the course of everyday life, including feeding and dressing themselves. Everyone has many occupations that are essential to our health and well-being.

According to the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists, “occupational therapists use a systematic approach based on evidence and professional reasoning to enable individuals, groups and communities to develop the means and opportunities to identify, engage in and improve their function in the occupations of life. The process involves assessment, intervention and evaluation of the client related to occupational performance in self-care, work, study, volunteerism and leisure. Occupational therapists may assume different roles such as advising  on health risks in the workplace, safe driving for older adults, and programs to promote mental health for youth.”

Depending on the particular situation, an occupational therapist will check
  • what one can and cannot do physically (including strength, coordination, balance, or other physical abilities);
  • what materials are used in the occupation (e.g., cooking utensils, clothing, tools, furniture, etc.);
  • what one can and cannot do mentally (coping strategies, memory, organization skills, or other mental abilities);
  • the social and emotional support available in the home, school, work and community; and
  • the physical setup of the house, school, workplace, classroom, or other environment.
Occupational therapists are also trained how to help others cope with their disabilities. OT can help with coping strategies, strength, coordination, and confidence, and recommend changes to environments that will be helpful. Community support may also be available, and the occupational therapist will also assist with finding specialized transportation, support groups, and funding agencies.

Where do occupational therapists work?

Occupational therapists are generally employed in community agencies, hospitals, chronic care facilities, rehabilitation centres and clinics, schools, social agencies industry or are self-employed. While some occupational therapists specialize in working with a specific age group, like the elderly, others may specialize in a particular disability such as arthritis, developmental coordination disorder, mental illness, or spinal cord injury.

Rehabilitation Sciences Information Sessions

If you’re curious about studying occupational therapy and other rehab sciences degrees, don’t miss the upcoming seminar at Western University. Enjoy refreshments and the opportunity to speak with Australian uni representatives and alumni to learn more about how you can study in Australia and practice in Canada! Be sure to RSVP to save your spot: http://study.oztrekk.com/rehab-sciences/

Western University
Date: February 9, 2017
Time: 5:30 p.m.
Location: UCC, Room 210

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Macquarie University receives award for Innovation in International Education

The Institute of International Education (IIE) has announced the winners of the annual IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards for Innovation in International Education with Macquarie University’s Global Leadership Program (GLP) receiving the award for Internationalising the Campus.

Macquarie University receives award for Innovation in International Education
The Macquarie Global Leadership Program team (Photo credit: Macquarie University)

The awards showcase the most innovative and successful models in practice today for international education, with a particular emphasis on initiatives that remove institutional barriers and broaden the base of participation in study abroad and promote international teaching and learning on campus.

The first of its kind when it launched in the Australian university sector in 2005, Macquarie’s GLP is the country’s flagship tertiary global leadership program with more than 3,600 active participants in more than 200 academic disciplines.

“The Global Leadership Program has broadened student understanding of some truly vital skills, including understanding of culture, leadership and global issues, and extended the learning opportunities for Global Leadership Program students far beyond the classroom,” said Professor Sherman Young, Pro Vice Chancellor Learning and Teaching.

GLP is a voluntary, extra-curricular learning and engagement program that students design according to their own interests and complete at their own pace. Students are required to complete a workshop series, attend tailored keynote speaker and networking events and complete an experiential credit component, which ranges from short-term study abroad to learning a new language to attending internationally themed seminars and study tours, such as a Domestic Symposium in Canberra or an International Symposium in Brazil.

The program is the only extra-curricular activity formally recognised on the official Macquarie University Academic Transcript, and provides flexibility for students to complete the requirements on campus at no additional cost. Committed to building a pipeline of global citizens, Macquarie University also selects local high school students to begin the Global Leadership Entry Program (GLEP) during their senior year. It boasts a track record of results in developing cross-cultural competency, leadership capability, understanding of global issues, community responsibility and global citizenship.

Program manager Chloë Spackman explains the GLP graduates are distinguished by their strong sense of global justice, acute awareness of the issues affecting the global community, and a keen awareness and enthusiasm for working together to achieve a better world for all.

“No matter where they go, Global Leadership Program students take with them a global mind-set that drives them to serve others, be active members of the community, and to lead by example.”

IIE will present the awards at a ceremony in Miami, Florida on March 14, 2017 as part of its annual Best Practices in Internationalization Conference for campus professionals.

What does the Macquarie Global Leadership Program involve?

The Global Leadership program has been designed so that you not only learn global skills and understanding—you put them into practice by studying, volunteering and participating in activities in Australia and overseas. Successful completion of the GLP will see you receive a certificate of completion and a notation on your transcript, which can provide a competitive edge in the global employment market.

Think Tanks
LP students will attend 6 Think Tanks to discuss and debate contemporary global issues, facilitated by specialists in their fields. Think Tanks require postgraduate students to make an informed argument about several global issues from a number of disciplines and allow collaboration with students from different academic and professional backgrounds.

Approved Events – Two Seminars
Macquarie University GLP students will participate in two keynote speaker events of their choice per session as advertised by the GLP regularly. These seminars could be anything from a GLP-run Foreign Affairs Series to a Lowy Institute event or an international or cross-culturally themed talk at Sydney Opera House.

Cross Cultural Practicum
Postgraduate students will engage in one cross-cultural, internationally focused practical experience as part of the Global Leadership Program. This experience can be undertaken at any stage during enrollment in the GLP.

Innovative Leaders Series
Students will attend a bi-annual Innovative Leaders Series event, network with fellow students, academics and industry professionals and be an audience to a keynote address by a pioneering leader. The Innovative Leaders Series is a unique opportunity open to students undertaking the GLP. A series of genuinely pioneering, innovative leaders will inspire and inform Global Leadership Program students.

Monday, February 06, 2017

UQ Medicine graduate shares 9 things he wishes he’d been told as a med student

Hailing from Canada, Shaun completed his medical degree at UQ before undertaking his fellowship at the University of Toronto and his residency with University of Calgary. He currently works full time as a Queensland Health registrar within intensive care and in his spare time he works for House Call Doctor— a 100% bulk-billed, after-hours, home GP service operating in Queensland. If you’d like to hear firsthand from a Canadian who is now practicing medicine in Australia, check out Shaun’s advice!

UQ Medicine graduate shares 9 things he wishes he'd been told as a med student
Canadian Shaun Hosein, now practicing in Australia! (Photo credit: UQ)

1. Study medicine for the right reasons.
Medicine is a highly rewarding career that has many opportunities in various sub-specialty fields. However it is a long road, requires intensive study, and at times can seem impossible. It is not a decision to be made lightly, and there are times I wish I could fix that leaky pipe in my kitchen. I chose medicine, because it not only helps people, but I enjoy thinking on my feet and problem solving. Reflecting a bit more, it has also developed my personal ethics and communication skills.

2. For international medicine students, you can’t beat UQ for education and lifestyle.
UQ is constantly improving their medicine course which I feel is important when choosing a university and medical school. When I was applying they were very approachable and efficient throughout the application process.  The case-based learning style made me nervous, but I think it is the best way to learn and study medicine. Brisbane is also an amazing city, it has the best climate of all Australian cities (none of this “four seasons in one day” stuff). Plus the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast are about an hour away! Perfect study and lifestyle balance.

3. Studying internationally is incredible, but it can be difficult when you return home.
I have spoken to numerous potential Canadian medical school candidates over the years, and my advice is the same. Studying medicine at UQ was a life-changing event for me, and provided me unique opportunities in an amazing country. I won’t lie—you will find it challenging being away from home, and to be honest, getting back into the Canadian system is difficult. UQ does facilitate opportunities to make this process easier, but it is still a challenge. Be prepared to finish internship training in Australia before considering the road back or please at least obtain and maintain general registration with AHPRA.

4. There are pros and cons to working in different health systems, so consider what’s important to you.
I can only speak in relation to the Canadian and Australian healthcare systems, but in my honest experience you get paid more, will have better shifts and rosters, and overall better work-life balance in Australia.  On the other hand, internship training is structured better in Canada: training is slightly shorter and there are no primary exams, but the programs are very difficult to get accepted into.

5. In medicine, you can have a “typical routine” but you’ll never have a “typical day.”
I currently work for Queensland Health and for House Call Doctor when I have extra time in the evenings, usually on nights off, or weekends. Being a home GP after-hours is very flexible and works well with my schedule. Working with House Call Doctor means I get to visit a wide variety of patients who need urgent after-hours care, treating everything from acute cold and flus to more serious conditions, such as gastro, home accidents or chronic illness. You really never know what kind of patients you’ll treat!

6. Sometimes taking the road less travelled will put you on the right path.
I always wanted to work in primary care, but it was quite difficult to get any experience and determine if it suited me. House Call Doctor has given me this experience but it’s also shown me another side to medical practice. I honestly feel after-hours care is becoming its own sub-specialty of medicine. I enjoy it because it allows me to have a simple chat with patients, to see children or speak with a young mum. It is very rewarding, and not something I could have experienced working in the adult system alone.

7. As a student, it’s easy to get run down from all that studying (and perhaps socialising). When you do get sick there are probably more healthcare options available to you than you think.
House Call Doctor offers 100% bulk-billed home GP visits to anyone with a Medicare or DVA (Department of Veteran’s Affair) Card.  Having a GP visit your home can be particularly useful in acute medical situations that don’t warrant an emergency department response, but can’t wait until normal clinic hours. House Call Doctor visits a wide cross-section of patients, including students living in shared accommodation. International students can also take advantage of the after-hours medical care, rebated if they travelling with BUPA, NIB, Allianz or Medibank insurance. For more information you can visit www.housecalldoctor.com.au, or you can phone the after-hours line on 13 55 66 to book an appointment.

8. Support networks and technology are invaluable for international students.
Having a strong family and supportive Australian peer group is extremely important throughout your medical degree. At the same time, don’t underestimate the impact of technology. Skype, FaceTime, and WhatsApp will ensure you can easily stay in touch with loved ones back home.

9. Your medical degree can take you anywhere and you’re likely to end up somewhere completely different to where you thought you would.
I have worked in numerous medical fields, and I have definitely not taken a straight path. Initially I was very keen on critical care (ICU), but when I worked in Haiti post-earthquake and again in Africa I got a better understanding of health and the need for public health medicine and primary care. I have since completed Canadian postgraduate training in public health medicine, and am now working towards translating my qualification here in Australia. I also have a public health interest in illicit substance abuse and drug use patterns and am completing a fellowship in toxicology. I tell everyone, especially medical students, to never discount the idea of being a GP; I’m still considering it, if I get time.

About the UQ Medical School Program

The UQ Medical School conducts a four-year, graduate-entry medical program, the Doctor of Medicine (MD). The School of Medicine is a leading provider of medical education and research in Australia, and with the country’s largest medical degree program, they are the major single contributor to Queensland’s junior medical workforce.

Program: Doctor of Medicine (MD)
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Semester intake: January
Duration: 4 years
Application deadline: Applications are assessed on a rolling admissions (first come, first served) basis. It is recommended that applicants apply as early as possible to increase their chances of timely assessment. This program can fill quickly!

Newcastle Law School offers complimentary legal services

A free and unique legal service aimed at assisting those in need, while also providing University of Newcastle (UON) students with real-world experience, hit Newcastle Beach recently.

Newcastle Law School offers complimentary legal services
Study law at the University of Newcastle
Now in its 14th year, Law on the Beach, run by UON’s Legal Centre, will hold drop-in consultations at Newcastle Beach Surf Club and the City Campus across January and February in order to increase access to legal services for people in need of guidance.

Newcastle Law School students in their penultimate year in law and social work, alongside experienced lawyers, donate their time and skills to assisting disadvantaged members of the public.

Daniel Richards, a fifth year Bachelor of Laws (Hons)/Diploma of Legal Practice student, will take time out of the university holidays to assist the program. The 22-year-old, who is originally from Muswellbrook, said he was keen to advance his skills while helping those in need.

“It’s one thing learning theory in the classroom, but it’s completely different applying what we’ve learnt to real-world cases. It’s an invaluable experience that makes a huge difference to both the students and the community.

“Newcastle Beach is such a great setting, as it creates a really relaxed and welcoming atmosphere. Everyone is in shorts and t-shirts and the sessions are conversational rather than a formal meeting,” he said.

Director of the Newcastle Law School Legal Centre, Mr Shaun McCarthy, said the students involved were extremely competent and keen to develop their knowledge, whilst displaying understanding and sensitivity to the issues at hand.

“Law on the Beach provides a unique opportunity for the community to access advice and assistance with their legal needs, as well as providing our exceptional students with real-world experience.

“Legal services are often inaccessible and can be confronting for younger members of the community due to their cost. The fact this program is so successful after 14 years is an indication that the service is still a necessary one,” Mr McCarthy said.

Drop-in sessions will run until Feb. 21.

Australian Law Schools Information Sessions

Would you like to hear from law graduates who have studied in Australia and are now practicing lawyers in Canada? Would you like to meet Australian law school representatives in person? Then please join us for the upcoming Australian Law Schools Information Sessions! Everyone is welcome to attend this free event! Don’t forget to RSVP for an Australian Law Schools Information Session. http://study.oztrekk.com/law-school/

Date: February 6, 2017
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: Adams Auditorium

Date: February 8, 2017
Time: 5 p.m.
Location: University of Toronto, Social Work Building, SK 720

Friday, February 03, 2017

Griffith University scientist named Australian of the Year

Griffith University Emeritus Professor Alan Mackay-Sim has been honoured as this year’s Australian of the Year recipient.

The retired biomedical scientist, whose ground-breaking stem-cell research was instrumental in helping a paralysed man walk again, accepted the prestigious award during a live announcement at Parliament House in Canberra on Australia Day eve.

Griffith University scientist named Australian of the Year
Griffith University Professor Emeritus Alan Mackay-Sim is the 2017 Queensland Australian of the Year (Photo via Griffith University)

Professor Mackay-Sim has spent his career researching how nerve cells in the nose regenerate and pioneered a way to safely apply that same regenerative process to damaged spinal cords.

Recognised as the 2003 Queenslander of the Year and the 2017 Queensland Australian of the Year, Professor Mackay-Sim will now spend the next year fulfilling his duties for the Australian title while still overseeing several research projects at the Griffith Institute for Drug Discovery.

Those projects include stem cell research into treatments for conditions such as schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease and Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to talk about the importance of research on spinal cord injury and brain diseases,” Professor Mackay-Sim said in his speech.

“About new treatments using stem cells and cell transplantation, undreamed of 20 years ago. About how we must, as Australians, prioritise our spending so that we can afford not only to look after the diseased and disabled in our communities but also to afford the research for new and radical treatments to reduce future health costs.

“As a nation we must be part of this. And we must invest in young scientists.”

Professor Mackay-Sim highlighted the vital need for continued support and funding for research to ensure this life changing work isn’t compromised.

Vice Chancellor Professor Ian O’Connor congratulated Professor Mackay-Sim on his national award.

“Griffith University is extremely proud to have such a remarkable man and scientist among us,” he said.

“Alan’s research has laid the foundation for global efforts to use stem cell surgery to repair spinal cord injury. It is an extraordinary field.

“He is a deserved recipient of Australian of the Year and we join the rest of the country in applauding him.”

Pro Vice Chancellor (Sciences) Professor Andrew Smith said, “We are delighted Emeritus Professor Alan Mackay-Sim and his research has been recognised at the highest level. Griffith Sciences Group remains committed to supporting this pioneering stem cell research towards new innovative treatments for spinal injury.”

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Record number of women graduating from engineering at UQ

The University of Queensland is celebrating the graduation of a record number of female engineering students last semester with women making up 35 per cent of all graduates—more than double the national average of 17 per cent.

Record number of women graduating from engineering at UQ
UQ female engineering graduates exceeded the national average of 17 per cent (Image credit: UQ)
UQ’s engineering cohort has seen significant growth in female graduate numbers since 2012, when they numbered 21 per cent, and the national average was 15 per cent.

Faculty of  Engineering, Architecture and Information Technology, (EAIT) Executive Dean, Professor Simon Biggs said the increase in female graduates highlights UQ’s leadership in shaping a more inclusive and equitable engineering industry, bolstered by the very successful Women in Engineering (WE) program which has been running for four years.

“The Women in Engineering program was established at UQ as a university-led, industry-funded initiative to address the gender disparity in engineering at both the tertiary and industry levels, and the results so far speak volumes for the value of the program.” said Professor Biggs.

“UQ also recently hosted the first joint university workshop to collaborate and share best practice for recruiting females into engineering.

More than 30 representatives from 18 universities across Australia, New Zealand and the US state of Colorado attended the event with the long-term objective to see female participation in engineering increase collectively across Australia.

“We don’t just want to see gender diversity improve in engineering at UQ, we want to see broad change across the industry in Australia and globally.”

Women currently account for less than 13 per cent of the engineering workforce in Australia, and industries that employ engineers are missing out on the benefits that diversity brings to technically-grounded problem solving.

EAIT faculty is leading from the top with a record increase in female academic appointments in engineering in 2016, especially in the area of chemical engineering. A popular area of study for female students, chemical engineering is an exemplar of female participation with women making up over 40 per cent of the graduating cohort this semester.

Second-year chemical and environmental engineering student Geethu George says young women need strong female role models when setting out in engineering careers.

“Being in contact with female academics in my field of study encourages me to keep moving forward with my decision to pursue engineering,” Ms George said.

“Having women in these senior positions and watching them achieve success is essential to increasing female participation in engineering.”

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Melbourne says emissions reduction, curriculum changes central to new Sustainability Plan

The University of Melbourne will be carbon neutral before 2030, achieve zero net emissions from electricity by 2021 and will now report annually on the institution’s sustainability impact and performance.

Melbourne says emissions reduction, curriculum changes central to new Sustainability Plan
Melbourne launches Sustainability Plan 2017–2020

That’s according to the university’s first institution-wide Sustainability Plan 2017–2020, an ambitious four-year strategy that will position Melbourne as a sector-leader in sustainability according to Vice-Principal Administration and Finance and Chief Financial Officer, Allan Tait.

The Plan also pushes for sustainability to become a more prominent part of all undergraduate curriculum, as well as outlining the university’s response to calls to divest from fossil fuel-intensive companies.

“The university has a responsibility to lead strongly and act decisively in addressing global societal challenges, such as building a more sustainable world.”

“This Sustainability Plan clearly outlines the university’s commitment to this important task and highlights how Melbourne is acting on this front across all areas of the institution, with holistic actions and targets that will assist in tackling the impacts of climate change.”

On divestment, the university recognises that climate change impacts result in increased risk and potential opportunities for its investments, and that it must act to mitigate this risk. It therefore plans to establish within a year a sustainable investment framework for evaluating and managing material climate change risk, and which will set out the criteria for divestment from and investment in listed equities.

This framework will as far as possible cover factors such as a company’s emissions intensity, emissions reduction plans, alignment to the outcomes of global climate change agreements and investment in and transition to renewable energy.

“Within four years, the university will be divested from, or in the process of divesting from, any material holdings that don’t satisfy the requirements of this framework,” said Mr Tait. “This approach, and that of all of the commitments in this plan, reflects the consolidated efforts and collective will of the university community.”

The Sustainability Plan is the result of a more than 12 months of public consultation process that commenced in late 2015 with the development of the university’s Sustainability Charter. This process saw nearly 500 attendees across two events as well as hundreds of email submissions into the development of both the plan and the charter.

While the charter establishes the high-level principles and values the university wishes to adopt when it came to sustainability, the plan sets out a range of clear targets and priority actions for how the institutions will meet these principles.

Other key aims for the plan:
  • Reduce emissions by 20,000 tonnes of carbon per year by 2020 through on-campus energy projects such as solar, wind and geothermal.
  • Increase the number of University of Melbourne graduates who can demonstrate a specialization in environment and sustainability.
  • Replace 10% of university car parking spaces with bicycle parking by 2018.
  • Publish a university-wide Biodiversity Management Plan.
  • Develop industry partnerships that emphasize the university’s resources for sustainability research.
The university is home to approximately 1,300 researchers who apply their expertise in fields relevant to sustainability and resilience said Mr Tait, and in partnership with industry, government and communities, this will support the transition to a more sustainable future.

“The plan is more than just a public statement of our commitment to sustainability. It sets out an ambitious path towards new modes of governance and operations in a warming world, and reiterates our desire to work with industry to support and assist the transition to a lower emissions future.”

Don’t miss the 2017 JCU Orientation for international students

JCU On-campus Welcome Information Sessions

If you’re headed to James Cook University for the semester 1, 2017 intake, it is important to arrive at the university in time to attend a Welcome Information Session.

JCU Orientation for international students
JCU dentistry students at Trinity Beach during their OzTREKK Orientation

Arriving early will allow more time to adjust to the culture (and warm weather!) and ensure the transition is a smooth experience. After arriving on campus either in Cairns or Townsville, please visit the Student Centre as soon as possible so that they can provide you with details of the JCU Orientation program.

Cairns – JCU Dental School

Compulsory Welcome Session
When: Friday, Feb. 10 at 9 a.m. Morning tea and lunch will be provided
Where: Building A3.2, JCU Cairns campus
What to bring: Passport, copy of your visa, JCU user name and password (if you have one)

Arrival service
Service dates: Monday, Feb. 6 – Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017
Booking deadline: Two weeks prior to your arrival. Book your arrival service now!

Orientation Week
Make sure to attend your faculty welcome on Monday or Tuesday and participate in any of the other activities on offer: campus tours, workshops, student ID card sessions, timetable assistance, parties and much more. Get the most out of JCU O Week!
When: Monday, Feb. 13  – Friday, Feb. 17, 2017


Townsville – JCU Medical School

Compulsory Welcome Session
When: Friday, Feb. 10 at 9 a.m. Morning tea and lunch will be provided
Where: Building 26 (Sir George Kneipp Auditorium), Townsville campus
What to bring: Passport, copy of your visa, JCU user name and password (if you have one)

Arrival service
Service dates: Monday, Feb. 6 – Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017
Booking deadline: Two weeks prior to your arrival. Book your arrival service now.

Orientation Week
Make sure to attend your faculty welcome on Monday or Tuesday and participate in any of the other activities on offer: campus tours, workshops, student ID card sessions, timetable assistance, parties and much more.
When: Monday, Feb. 13  – Friday, Feb. 17, 2017