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Lecturer wins award for down syndrome research

ACT Dr Faragher

Dr Rhonda Faragher, Senior Lecturer in Education at ACU’s Canberra Campus has, been awarded the Alderson Award from the ACT Down Syndrome Association.

The Alderson Award is presented to an individual, group or business for actions that the Association considers result in significant contribution to people with Down syndrome and/or their families in the ACT.

Dr Faragher’s work has centered on helping all learners experience success in the area of mathematics, particularly those with Down syndrome.  Dr Faragher has a personal interest that drives her passion in this area, herself being a mother of a teenage daughter with Down syndrome.

Dr Faragher has contributed her research and expertise to many published journals and is a Board member of Down Syndrome International.  In 2009 Dr Faragher was awarded a Commonwealth of Australia Endeavour Executive Award to work in Singapore in the area of Down syndrome.

Dr Faragher also volunteers her time to present mathematics workshops for both teachers and parents supporting children with Down syndrome in the ACT. Her workshops reflect her passion for both mathematics and her belief that we are all lifelong learners.

ACU lecturer launches book at David’s Place

Dr Sandra Carroll, Lecturer in Religious Education at Australian Catholic University (ACU) recently launched The Poetry of Chris Rath: The David’s Place Selections.

David’s Place is a space in Sydney where marginal people and anyone else can come to express their own spirituality and develop their relationship with God through prayer, celebrations and community activities. A number of ACU’s Clemente students attend David’s Place to engage with others, discuss events and share a meal.

Co-founder of David’s Place, Sue Buckingham, said Chris Rath was a compulsive writer of poetry. She said
his struggle to live with a severe mental illness,  life in a Housing Commission flat in Redfern, and his quest to find truth, meaning and beauty in his life informs all that he writes..

Dr Carroll has come to know Chris and many others at David’s Place through her visits, and said she was proud to launch the book of poems.


Library commended for Clemente Partnership

The Central Highlands Regional Library Corporation (CHRLC) has received a Highly Commended award for their ‘Building skills for Life’ program, in partnership with Clemente Australia run at Ballarat Library.

Dr Anne Gervasoni, senior lecturer at ACU’ Ballarat Campus, said the award, presented by the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) Library Stars, was “further evidence of the community capacity building that the Clemente program ignites in Ballarat.”

“Congratulations to Lesley Morgan, Kaye Beaumont, Jenny Schmidt and the Ballarat team for all the work they have put into supporting the Clemente Program,” she said. “Through the teams’ efforts, students are receiving specialised support and are now regular library users, who bring their families along to the library and see the library as a very important part of their learning pathway.”

Australasian Catholic Press Association Awards

Dr Diane Charleson, lecturer in media communications at the Melbourne Campus, represented ACU recently at the 2010 Australasian Catholic Press Association (ACPA) Awards.

Dr Charleson was a judge in the Best Example of Education Coverage category.

The awards ceremony took place in Hobart as part of the ACPA annual conference and prizes were awarded in 20 categories.

“Representatives of the Catholic press were very supportive of ACU’s venture into a media communications program,” Dr Charleson said.

“Future partnerships are in the pipeline.”

Melbourne cheerleaders set on national championship

Cheerleaders-lrgThe ACU Cheerleading Club at practise

The ACU Cheerleading Club has overcome a year of hurdles with the assistance of the community.

The group, which welcomes both students and external members, was started by Melbourne Campus students who saw that most other universities had cheer squads at major sporting events.

The team, who had no previous cheerleading experience, jumped into action - organising bake sales to raise money and recruit members.

Co-captain Alison Cheney said the group has encountered many problems.
“We have encountered every hiccup possible, from not being able to find a training space to having members of the executive team leave,” she said.

“The support from our coach, Mark Young, and other mentors has helped us persevere.”

The group now has their eyes set on the ASCFF All Star Cheer and Dance Championship (Nationals) in October at the State Netball and Hockey Centre. 

If you would like more information about the ACU Cheerleading please contact the team at acu_cheer_squad@hotmail.com


Psychological Society information day

The annual Australian Psychological Society (APS) Postgraduate Course Information Day was recently hosted at Australian Catholic University’s (ACU) Melbourne Campus.

This event is the key information day for students enrolled at universities in Victoria who are interested in further study in psychology. The event involved speakers from the APS, the Psychologists Board of Australia, and 11 institutions offering Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC) accredited post graduate courses, including the University of Melbourne, Monash University and Australian Catholic University (ACU).

The morning session focussed on master’s and doctoral training, while the afternoon session presented fourth year courses in psychology – with more than 800 students attending.

Associate Professor Sabine Hammond, Head of the School of Psychology, , thanked the student organising committee and ACU staff and student volunteers for making the event a great success.


ACU student wins Yvonne Aitken Scholarship

Scholarship winnerJemma Clark, Associate Vice-Chancellor Chris Sheargold, and Dr Madeleine Laming

Australian Catholic University (ACU) student Jemma Clark has won the Yvonne Aitken Scholarship for Graduate Diploma of Education Students - awarded by the Victorian branch of the Australian Federation of University Women (AFUW).

Dr Madeleine Laming, Vice President of AFUW Victoria and lecturer in education at ACU, said the
 scholarship is a fantastic opportunity for Graduate Diploma of Education students.

“Graduate Diploma of Education is a difficult year for students in some respects, as full time field experience placement is up to 9 weeks, which limits a student’s earning capacity and can become financially draining,” she said.

Applications for all of the AFUW scholarships for 2011 will open shortly.