Graduation ceremonies for the University of Newcastle will be held at the Callaghan campus next week.
Twelve ceremonies are scheduled for Wednesday 7, Thursday 8, Friday 9 and Saturday 10 April, with more than 3,500 students graduating.
Following is information regarding the ceremonies, occasional speakers and honorary doctorate recipients.
Academic Registrar, Gail White, is available for interview today only.
For interviews with any of the occasional speakers or graduates please contact Keeley O'Mara in Media and Public Relations.
Media note: As Tuesday 6 April is a University holiday, please contact the Media and PR team today (Thursday 1 April) if you need anything more.
Wednesday 7 April
10am: Faculty of Science and Information Technology
Occasional Speaker: Dr Cathy Foley. Dr Foley is a Research Program Leader with CSIRO Materials Science and Engineering Division. Part of the CSIRO team since 1985, Dr Foley manages research into wave physics, superconductivity and magnetism, and fluids.
2pm: Faculty of Science and Information Technology
Occasional Speaker: Mr Mike McCluskey. Mr McCluskey is the New South Wales State Director of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and Head of Corporate Social Responsibility. He is responsible for all cross divisional issues, corporate strategies, major projects, state initiatives and external stakeholder engagement.
6pm: Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment
Occasional Speaker: Emeritus Professor Alan Roberts AM. Professor Roberts has been researching and consulting nationally and internationally in the field of bulk solids for more than 50 years. He is a Professorial Fellow of the University of Newcastle's Centre for Bulk Solids and Particulate Technologies and the Foundation Director of TUNRA Bulk Solids (TBS).
Thursday 8 April
10am: Faculty of Health
Occasional Speaker: Dr Maggie Haertsch. Dr Haertsch is Program Manager for Aboriginal Health Research Capacity Building at Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute. She is also a conjoint senior lecturer at the University of Newcastle.
2pm: Faculty of Health
Occasional Speaker: Dr Duncan Reid. Dr Reid is Head of the School of Rehabilitation and Occupation Studies at Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand. He is also Vice President of the International Federation of Orthopaedic Manipulative Therapists and past President of the New Zealand Manipulative Physiotherapists Association.
6pm: Faculty of Health
Honorary Doctorate recipient and Occasional Speaker: Professor David Hill. Professor Hill is an internationally renowned behavioural scientist, Director of the Cancer Council Victoria and a Professorial Fellow at the University of Melbourne. He is credited with reforming the health behaviour of Victorian residents in relation to smoking and cancer over the last 40 years.
Friday 9 April
10am: Faculty of Education and Arts
Occasional Speaker: Mr Alan Green. Mr Green is the Headmaster of Newcastle Grammar School, a position he has held for more than 20 years. Under his leadership the school has grown to become the leading independent school in the region with outstanding academic results and state-of-the-art facilities.
2pm: Faculty of Education and Arts
Occasional Speaker: Mr David Marr. Mr Marr is an accomplished journalist, author and political and social commentator. Winner of three Walkley Awards, Mr Marr currently writes for The Sydney Morning Herald and regularly appears on ABC television's Insiders and Q&A.
6pm: Faculty of Education and Arts
Occasional Speaker: Mr Ian Munro. Mr Munro is an internationally-renowned Australian pianist whose career has taken him to 30 countries. Currently a member of staff at the University of New South Wales, Mr Munro graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts before training in Vienna, London and Italy.
Saturday 10 April
10am: Faculty of Business and Law
Occasional Speaker: Mr Geoff Lilliss. Mr Lilliss is the Executive General Manager - Engineering, Transmission & Technology for EnergyAustralia. He is responsible for EnergyAustralia's electricity transmission and distribution network, the largest in Australia. The network delivers energy to more than 1.6 million customers in Sydney, the Central Coast and Hunter regions.
2pm: Faculty of Business and Law
Occasional Speaker: Dr Geoff Leonard AM. Dr Leonard is the Chairman of Newcastle Innovation, the University's commercial arm, and also Chair of the Faculty of Business and Law Advisory Board. He is a member of University Council and on the board of the University Foundation.
6pm: English Language and Foundation Studies (ELFS) Attainment Ceremony
Occasional Speaker: Mr Steve McLennan. Mr McLennan is a graduate of the University's Open Foundation program. He is employed as a researcher and archivist at the Maitland Gaol and is currently finalising his PhD thesis on the heritage-listed site.
From Kindergarten to graduation
Lifelong friends Alice Grady and Myles Young have a habit of following each other around. The pair started Kindergarten together in 1993, shared classes through primary school and high school, and then went on to study psychology at the University of Newcastle. The 22-year-olds are now working as research assistants at the University. Both will graduate with a Bachelor of Psychology (Myles with Honours) at 10am on Wednesday 7 April. Alice said the pair had not planned to follow the same path.
"We have always been great friends and to be able to support each other during our studies was a real help," she said. For both Alice's and Myles' parents, the graduation ceremony holds additional significance. Following Alice's graduation, Brian and Teresa Grady will have watched all five of their children graduate from the University of Newcastle. Myles' parents, Kevin and Anne Young, will also celebrate the graduation of youngest son Ross at the same ceremony.
Success is achievable
Beimop (BJ) Tapim is proof that you can achieve your goals if you set your mind to it. BJ is from the Dauareb tribe of remote Murray Island in the Torres Strait, and joined the Navy shortly after completing high school. He was working as a medical officer until a Navy doctor convinced him to try medicine. At the age of 28, BJ was accepted into medicine at the University of Newcastle. BJ will receive a Bachelor of Medicine at 6pm on Thursday 8 April. BJ and his partner have four children between them and are expecting twins in May. Completing his degree with a young family was a challenge BJ accepted head-on.
"The University offers very good support, not only to Indigenous medical students but students throughout the University," he said. BJ is currently working as an intern with Hunter New England Health. There are around 140 Indigenous doctors in Australia and three University of Newcastle graduates, including BJ, join the ranks this year.
Born in Glasgow, Annemarie Murland migrated to Australia in 1991 with her Australian husband. After taking courses in life drawing and interior design, Annemarie decided to enrol in the University's Open Foundation course. She then went on to study for a Bachelor of Fine Art, winning University and Faculty medals for her academic achievements. An accomplished artist, Annemarie's work has been recognised through a number of painting commendations and awards. She has also been offered an opportunity to exhibit her work in New York next year. Well recognised in her field, Annemarie will present at an international art conference in Athens in June. She currently teaches painting and drawing at the University. Annemarie will graduate with a PhD in Fine Art at 10am on Friday 9 April.
Studying at university can be hard enough, but is harder when you try to fit in alpine skiing competitions all over the world. Brenton Fetterplace managed to follow his dream of becoming an accomplished alpine skier while studying for a business degree at the University. The 24-year-old started competing in downhill skiing at the age of seven, with his natural talent taking him to national champion and the World Cup in 2008. Brenton said the support of his family made his ambitions achievable.
"I was very fortunate to have parents who loved the sport and were dedicated to the long trips and costs involved," he said. During his studies, Brenton was constantly on the move, training and racing throughout Europe, the USA, Canada and New Zealand. Brenton is currently completing a traineeship in a Hunter Valley mine. He will graduate with a Bachelor of Business at 2pm on Saturday 10 April.
For interviews with any of the graduates please contact Keeley O'Mara in Media and Public Relations on 02 4921 6856 / 0448 898 813.
Vice-Chancellor's School Teacher Awards
Two previous school teachers of graduates will be recognised for their lasting positive impacts on the lives of students with an award from the University of Newcastle.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic and Global Relations), Professor Kevin McConkey said the Vice-Chancellor's School Teacher Awards highlighted the role of school teachers in the choices students made about their future.
"One of the greatest influences on student learning is quality teaching, and teachers deserve support and encouragement for their commitment to students," he said.
Students who completed their University studies in 2009 were asked to nominate a teacher from their past who had a lasting and profound impact on their lives.
The recipients of the Vice-Chancellor's School Teacher Awards for 2009 are:
Margaret Rennie — Mathematics teacher, Newcastle High School
Margaret Rennie was nominated by Syidah Harris, who is graduating with a Bachelor of Design (Architecture).
Syidah nominated Margaret as a teacher who challenges all students, especially those who think mathematics is not for them, to become enthused with a love of mathematical thinking.
Margaret Rennie will receive her award during the graduation ceremony at 6pm on Wednesday 7 April 2010.
Jennifer Noone — Technology teacher, Irrawang High School
Jennifer Noone was nominated by Kristienne Thomas, who is graduating with a Bachelor of Teaching/Bachelor of Design and Technology.
Kristienne nominated Jennifer as a teacher who has been challenging and inspiring students for over 25 years and demonstrates unwavering enthusiasm and commitment to teaching.
Jennifer Noone will receive her award during the graduation ceremony at 2pm on Friday 9 April 2010.