Research Advantage

Congratulations 2020 successful recipients

Early Career Researcher HDR Candiate Scholarships

The University recognises the contribution Early Career Researchers (ECRs) make to the University’s research profile and productivity. UON is committed to supporting and developing ECRs research and research leadership, through the provision of PhD candidate scholarships.

CONGRATULATIONS successful recipients 2020 Women in Research STEMM ECR PhD Candidate Scholarships

Dr Emma Beckett

School of Environmental and Life Sciences

This scholarship will allow the development of a project focused on consumer acceptance and perceptions of low alcohol wines, a multidisciplinary project encompassing nutrition and health, food science and consumer science.

Dr Renee Goreham

School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences

This will allow me to continue to grow my research group with an additional student to investigate the synthesis and characterisation of nanomaterials for biomedical applications.

Dr Fiona Hawke

School of Health Sciences

We will continue to develop a clinical model to prevent foot and leg complications, including ulceration and amputation, in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with diabetes, and improve cultural capability training in undergraduate podiatry students.

Dr Melinda Hutchesson

Senior Lecturer
School of Health Sciences

The student will have a specific focus on building world-first epidemiological evidence to demonstrate how modifiable risk factors for cardiovascular disease (e.g. diet, physical inactivity) modify the association between hypertensive pregnancies and cardiovascular health outcomes.

Dr Tessa Lord

School of Environmental and Life Sciences

The student that takes on the research project will be studying spermatogonial stem cells as a potential tool to treat male infertility.

Dr Tracy Schumacher

Clinical Teaching and Research Academic
University of Newcastle Department of Rural Health

The scholarship will allow me to continue to build a small team of focused clinical researchers to be dedicated to the prevention of chronic disease in rural areas. The candidate’s project will align with a local clinical diabetes service.

The Women in Research [WIR] STEMM Early Career Researcher [ECR] PhD Candidate scholarships support the University’s commitment to fostering and developing ECR’s research and research leadership through the provision of fully funded PhD scholarships. The PhD scholarships are available for domestic candidates only (Australian and New Zealand citizens and Australian Permanent Residents and Humanitarian visa holders).

A primary focus of the initiative is supporting the development of ECR Women in STEMM fields, particularly those in low female participation disciplines (e.g., physics, mathematics and engineering) with the aim to redress some of the systemic biases that early career women face, including fewer HDR supervision opportunities and support.


These scholarships are intended to enhance ECR projects and bring together quality PhD candidates with committed ECRs for their mutual benefit. This initiative is an initiative of Research Advantage and the University’s Athena SWAN SAGE Pilot Action Plan, and aligns with the NeW Futures Strategic Plan 2016-2025 focus on supporting researchers’ endeavours and attracting high calibre research candidates.


6 April 2020 Closing date for ECR applications
By 30 April 2020 ECR applicants advised of outcome
31 May 2020 Closing date for PhD candidates’ applications
30 June 2020 PhD candidates advised of outcome
31 July 2020 Latest date for PhD candidates to commence candidature and scholarship


The University requires that all ECR applicants satisfy the following eligibility criteria;

  1. Applicants must be a paid employee of the University of Newcastle; and
  2. Applicants must hold an Academic Level A, B or C appointment in a STEMM Faculty (FEBE, FSCI and FHEAM)  and the remaining term of the appointment must meet or exceed the tenure of the PhD program (4 Years) or written evidence from the unit of employment to extend the current appointment commensurate to the length of the PhD program; and
  3. Applicants were awarded their PhD no less than 12 months ago and no more than five years ago, with consideration given to periods of career interruption. Career interruptions may include but are not limited to periods of non-research employment, parental leave, misadventure or carer responsibilities; and
  4. Applicants cannot have been previous recipients of an ECR HDR scholarship.


ECR applicants must submit the following documentation to the Dean of Graduate Research no later than 5pm on the closing date for ECR applications.

  1. Completed application form
  2. List of the ECR’s research achievements post the award of their PhD (i.e. a publications list; conference presentations; income; and grant applications, indicating success or otherwise)

ECR applicants must obtain the support of their Head of School and Assistant Dean Research Training prior to the application closing date.