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The Menzies Brief - Vol 19, No. 3, 2016

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Menzies Brief banner 8 dec 2015 32

  Hello Visitor,

This is the latest edition of the Menzies Brief - Vol 19, No. 3, 2016

June 2016

President’s report

Telling the world about our alumni

Josie Barbaro 2015

At this time of year I think back on when I first applied for a Menzies Scholarship in the Allied Health Sciences and what an impact it has had on the direction of my career and opportunities it has created. I am always very excited to hear the stories about other scholars and their personal journeys.

When I see the new video of some of our scholars, highlighting some of their key achievements, it makes me very honoured to be part of this group. I hope you have had a look at ‘Leadership takes many forms’ and taken the opportunity to share it (there are some details below about how to do that). To enable even more sharing of material about Menzies Scholars, the Foundation has reinvigorated our Facebook page and will now start posting media coverage and other news about Menzies Scholars (along with Twitter and LinkedIn, which continue to grow).

Let’s do what we can to tell the world about what the members of our alumni achieve. And a very big thank you to those scholars who appeared in the video, providing so much of their time to make sure we have a wonderful story to tell.

MF Video

Dr Josie Barbaro
MMSA President

Save the date – Menzies annual scholarship awards in Sydney for 2016

The 2016 Menzies Foundation Scholarship awards will be held in Sydney on Thursday 17 November. Please save the date and if you’re keen to come from interstate, it is a busy time of year in Sydney so maybe start thinking about your accommodation. 

Secretary’s report

Scholarship season a time to celebrate achievement

Annual Report 2015

It was a real honour to don the cover of the Menzies Foundation annual report 2015 and show off some of the exciting things that we intrepid engineers get to do. It is also that time of year for engineers (and others) looking to take their careers to the next level to apply for a Menzies Scholarship (details below). The allied health research and engineering scholarships are open now, with law and international law to follow shortly.

It’s been terrific to read the scholar stories in the annual report to get a greater understanding of what some of our alumni are up to:

The achievements of 1983 Menzies Scholar in Law, Belinda Gibson, during her time with ASIC were quite remarkable. Now she is using her skills to help other organisations like the Menzies School of Health Research in Darwin and as Chair of the Chief Executive Women Organisation Scholarship Committee, which provides scholarships to future women business leaders.

Professor Paul Hodges (1994 Menzies Research Scholar in the Allied Health Sciences) is doing outstanding national work, which will be of benefit to most Australians at some time in their lives, with his NHMRC funded research into spinal and other musculoskeletal pain.

At an early stage of her career, water resources engineer and 2013 Menzies Scholar in Engineering, Mahala McLindin, is advancing the understanding of how climate and land use change impact water resources at the community level.

But I particularly enjoyed reading about 1989 Menzies Scholar in Medicine, Professor Jamie Vandenberg, who is advancing our understanding of why so many Australians die each year from sudden cardiac death. The passion he exhibits for both his work and his colleagues is quite inspiring.

I’d like to encourage you all to take a few minutes to have a read of these stories too. There are so many reasons to celebrate the achievements of our Menzies Alumni.

Dr Adrian McCallum
MMSA Secretary/Treasurer

30 June approaches – are you able to make a donation this year?

Each year at this time we make contact to seek an annual donation to the Menzies Memorial Scholars Association and the Menzies Foundation scholarship program.

The annual donation request was sent out to you in a slightly different way this year, in conjunction with the announcement about the video and the annual report.

If you didn’t receive the email please let Pam or AJ know.

We have set up a new easy system for online donations specifically for the alumni.

As you know, a significant proportion of the annual donation has gone to the Menzies Centenary Prize (Dimboola) and we are delighted to let you know that Andrew King from the Dimboola Memorial Secondary College is this year’s recipient of the $10,000 prize.

Traditionally the request for donations has been for an annual MMSA membership of $130 ($50 for MMSA, $80 for Dimboola) plus an optional, nominal amount to contribute to the scholarship program of the Foundation.

As part of your thinking this year, we would like you to consider a regular donation to the Foundation which would continue to support the work of the MMSA, the Menzies Centenary Prize, the wider Menzies scholarship program and allow us to plan better for future expansion of our work. The options are on the donation page and can all be set up online. All donations are tax deductible so it’s timely to think about this before 30 June. Please contact Pam if you’d like to put in place some other kind of arrangement. 

Menzies Alumni symposia grants – apply now

Did you know all Menzies Scholars and Fellows are eligible for an annual symposia grant?

Every year up to $10,000 is offered for Menzies Scholars to present their work at a major conference, workshop or symposium.

The two grants of up to $5000 are open to ALL Menzies scholars, regardless of profession.

If you have an idea for a symposium or conference session or presentation sponsored by the Menzies Foundation, take a look at the guidelines and submit a 1-2 page proposal outlining your idea to

Menzies Scholars achieve amazing things

There has been extensive coverage of a discovery by 2006 NHMRC/RG Menzies Fellow, Dr Nick Huntington (Laboratory Head at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute), and his team identifying the mechanism by which natural killer immune cells can destroy cancer cells. Essentially the discovery is about activating an individual’s natural killer cells to help them fight their own cancer.  

Dr Nick Huntington (photo credit Walter and Eliza Hall Institute)

The story was covered nationally on the ABC and SBS, as well as in the UK in the Daily Mail and the Mirror, not to mention the medical industry press.

Speaking of leading cancer researchers, 2008 NHMRC/RG Menzies Fellow and immunologist, Dr Misty Jenkins, has recently been awarded the Suzanne Cory Fellowship, the NHMRC RD Wright Career Development Fellowship and started a new lab head role also with the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI). SBS recently presented a piece on Misty’s role in encouraging other Aboriginal students to follow in her footsteps. Misty joins other Menzies alumni making an impact at WEHI including Dr Nick Huntington, 1999 NHMRC/RG Menzies Fellow Dr Bob Anderson (now working on a vaccine for Coeliac disease in the US), and 2007 NHMRC/RG Menzies Fellow, Dr Ken Pang, who is a senior postdoctoral fellow in the inflammation division.

The Australian Government has nominated 2000 Menzies Scholar in Law, Professor Chester Brown, for election as a member of the International Law Commission (ILC).  The ILC plays a role in upholding the rule of law internationally. The elections will take place at the United Nations in November and Chester’s nomination has also been supported by New Zealand and Canada.

1987 Menzies Scholar in Medicine and Menzies Foundation Chair, Professor Simon Maddocks has been appointed to the Australian Government’s new Council for International Education. As the Vice-Chancellor of Charles Darwin University he is one of the industry experts providing advice on one of Australia’s top service exports.

1983 Menzies Scholar in Law, Belinda Gibson, not only featured in our annual report this year, but her role in changing ASIC’s approach to insider trading (while Deputy Chair of ASIC) was recently referenced in the Financial Review.

Allied Health and Engineering Scholarships open

Allied Health and Engineering Scholarships open 2016If you are a previous Menzies Research Scholar in the Allied Health Sciences or a Menzies Scholar in Engineering you will have received an email about the current scholarship application process, as we’d love you to encourage your colleagues and others in your networks to apply.

This year the Menzies Research Scholarship in the Allied Health Sciences has opened with an increased value from $27,500 to $40,000 per year for two years.

The Menzies Scholarship in Engineering, which is valued at AUD$75,000 per year for postgraduate study at an overseas university, has opened in the past week.

Our new online application system is working very well and already the interest levels are up on last year.

Keep an eye out for the following scholarship opportunities – we will encourage each of our professional alumni groupings to help us spread the word about the relevant scholarship. You probably have the best idea of the kinds of people we are looking for and who may benefit most.  

Menzies Research Scholarship in the Allied Health Sciences:

  • Opened: May
  • Closes: 30 June

Menzies Scholarship in Engineering:

  • Opened: 1 June
  • Closes: 31 July

Menzies Scholarship in Law and Sir Ninian Stephen Menzies Scholarship in International Law

  • Open: 1 July
  • Close: 31 August

As always there is more information all of the scholarships on the Menzies Foundation website.

Sharing our video… you can do it on Facebook and YouTube now too

Depending on your technical capabilities and which social media platforms you use, there are different ways you can view and share the new Menzies scholar video ‘Leadership takes many forms’.

From the Menzies Foundation web pages go into the page with the story and you will see the sharing buttons at the top of the page – you can use any of those to share the story.

sharing our video

But you may want to view or share the video more directly and to enable that we have set it up on YouTube also. YouTube tends to work better for LinkedIn (the social media platform most preferred by the Menzies alumni) and if you want to play the video somewhere externally.

If you visit our new Facebook page, you will see a selection of the photos from last year’s scholars’ award event in Canberra. We will keep building on the page so feel free to share anything published about a Menzies scholar or comment on the posts. You can also invite other people to like the page; it’s very easy.

If you have any feedback on the video or any of the communication channels, please contact Communications Manager, Kate Nolan.  

Quan gets reading!

Quan's books2015 Menzies Engineering Scholar, Quan Lau, may have a lot of reading to do for her studies at Oxford, but she’s added a very impressive list of books to read on the side, after winning our scholar photo competition.

Have you read this selection?

Are you following?

Don’t forget you can follow us now on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.