The University of Newcastle will recognise the outstanding achievements of three of its distinguished graduates at the annual Alumni (Convocation) Awards tomorrow night.
President of the University of Newcastle Alumni (Convocation), Mr Brian Kennaugh, said the prestigious awards were an important way for the University to recognise the outstanding, lasting achievements of its graduates.
Convocation Medal for Professional Excellence
The Convocation Medal for Professional Excellence is awarded to a graduate with an outstanding record of professional excellence in leadership, knowledge and/or professional practice.
Professor Sue McNeil, originally from Maitland and now living in the United States, will receive the Medal for Professional Excellence in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the field of engineering as a researcher, academic and teacher. Her research and teaching interests focus on transportation infrastructure management, with emphasis on the application of advanced technologies, economic analysis, analytical tools and computer applications. Professor McNeil is currently the Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Urban Planning and Public Affairs at the University of Delaware, in the United States.
The Newton-John Award is presented to a graduate displaying innovation or creativity in any field that has improved life, particularly in Newcastle or Hunter Region.
Internationally renowned conductor Dr Philip Matthias will receive the Newton-John Award for developing a vibrant culture of choral and organ music inspiring and motivating students to perform professionally at international levels. Under his direction, the choir has performed at world-renowned venues, including St Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey and Notre Dame Cathedral. Dr Matthias also led the University of Newcastle Chamber Choir to its recent victory in the Seven Network's Battle of the Choirs competition.
Convocation Award for Exceptional Service
The Exceptional Service Award recognises the work of an outstanding individual who has made a significant contribution to the community of the University of Newcastle or the Hunter community.
Former Mayor of Newcastle Greg Heys will posthumously receive the Convocation Award for Exceptional Service. Mr Heys served the community as a University educator, environmental campaigner, community development practitioner and committed activist. Through his work he remained committed to consensus, collaboration, consultation and the dignity of what he termed 'ordinary people living heroic lives'.
Photo opportunity: The Convocation Awards will be presented at 6pm (Wednesday 15 October) in the University's Brennan Room in the Shortland Union Building, Newcastle Campus at Callaghan. Greg Heys' wife, Wendy Heys, will accept the Convocation Award for Exceptional Service on Greg's behalf.
For more information or to organise interviews with recipients, contact Blythe Hamilton, Media and Public Relations.