Annual awards celebrate outstanding staff

Flinders University President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Colin Stirling was honoured to present outstanding individuals and teams across the University with the 2022 Staff Awards, in a ceremony held in the Plaza at Bedford Park last week.

After welcoming guests to the annual event, Professor Stirling spoke about the importance of recognising brilliance, and he thanked all staff for their contributions to another exciting year at Flinders.

“Celebrating staff achievements and successes is a really important thing, and it is an absolute privilege to be here to do just that,” said Professor Stirling.

“It is terrific to have the opportunity to celebrate some of the enormous successes that we have here at the University, knowing that every single one of those successes is down to our people.”

The annual awards recognise remarkable staff across academic, professional, teaching and research areas, who have contributed to the University’s reputation as a leader in contemporary education, making Flinders a home of world-class research and an inspiring place to work.

Check out the full photo gallery here.

Mark Gregory, Vice-President of Corporate Services, presented the Staff Service Award to honour 25 years of service to the University, and thanked these staff for their continual impact and dedication to Flinders. “These are folks who have put an enormous amount into Flinders, have seen an enormous amount of change here and an enormous amount of growth and success, and we have deeply benefitted from their experience and dedication,” said Mr Gregory.

  • Professor Karen Reynolds 
  • Professor Jian Qin 
  • Professor Craig Simmons
  • Katherine Reaiche 
  • Helen Weedon
  • Professor James Harrison
  • Margaret Alexander

Mr Gregory also presented the 2022 Professional Staff Awards to individuals and teams who exemplify the University’s ethos and values to support the achievement of its goals.

Professor Colin Stirling and Mark Gregory (far right) present the Flinders Integrity Award to Fletcher O’Leary and Steph Walker

“Congratulations to all our winners. We are very proud of you, and all of you should take pride in the professional and wonderful work you do for the University,” said Mr Gregory.

  • Flinders Integrity Award: Fletcher O’Leary and Steph Walker, for their involvement in establishing the Flinders University Pride Network, advocating and campaigning tirelessly to support the network for staff and students, and continuing to promote equity and inclusion at Flinders.
  • Flinders Integrity Commendation: Jess Hall, for her professionalism, ethical standards, expertise and commitment to fostering a safe and healthy Biosafety and Biosecurity environment at Flinders.
  • Flinders Courage Award: Tori Edmonds, for her leadership in the MD Rural Stream program, managing the team through change across multiple sites and building strong relationships with local communities.
  • Flinders Excellence Award: Narmon Tulsi, for his outstanding efforts in supporting research in the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, going above and beyond to ensure success in grant funding applications.
  • Flinders Excellence Commendation: Hayley Anderson, for her high level of professionalism and service to the Social Work Innovation Research Living Space (SWIRLS).
  • Flinders Innovation Award: Jason McCormick, for his innovative approach to security on campus and engagement with stakeholder and community groups to improve healthcare access in remote areas.
  • Flinders Innovation Commendation: Amy Kosandiak, for reinvigorating how the Library informs and engages with students.
  • Flinders Student-Centred Award: Joshua Elvin, for his tireless work in providing a therapeutic space for students that is warm, welcoming, caring and supportive during their most difficult moments.
  • Flinders Student-Centred Commendation: Megan Garcia, for her empowering work with the International Student Ambassadors group.
  • Flinders Dream Team Award: Office of Indigenous Strategy and Engagement, for significant contributions to the work of Flinders in Indigenous education, strategy, community engagement and reconciliation.

The hard work and dedication to ensure that Flinders University is equipped to respond to the many challenges brought about by the pandemic were recognised in two new COVID-related awards.

  • Flinders COVID Resilience Team Commendation: Flinders Living, for supporting students during COVID-19, and helping students manage the experience of lock-down and isolation effectively in the residences.
  • COVID Flinders Commendation: COVID-19 Taskforce, for tireless efforts during the pandemic, keeping the Flinders community informed and safe through the many twists and turns of the pandemic.

Associate Professor Simone Tur, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous) was joined by Professor Robert Saint, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), to present the 2022 Flinders Reconciliation Awards to recognise individuals and teams across the University who champion the promotion of Reconciliation across Flinders.

Professor Robert Saint and Associate Professor Simone Tur present the Flinders Reconciliation Awards

“Introduced in 2021, these awards recognise and celebrate individuals and teams from across our University who play a leading role in the promotion of Reconciliation at Flinders University,” said Associate Professor Tur.

The following individuals were acknowledged for their passion and the work they contribute to ensure we continue on the journey towards Reconciliation:

  • Sarah Higgins, for her work with Arrernte artist Pat Ansell-Dodd and external firms to design, produce and distribute a unique shirt based on an original central Australian painting, to create a meaningful and significant celebration of NAIDOC Week in 2022.
  • Professor Amy Roberts, for her long-term and multi-layered engagement with Traditional Owner groups and for her work with South Australian Aboriginal communities focusing on social justice, employment, capacity building, cultural heritage protection, exploring colonial legacies and amplifying Aboriginal ways of knowing.
  • Dr Nina Sivertsen, for her outstanding work to establish the College of Nursing and Health Sciences Aboriginal Curriculum Interest Network, and promoting an innovative and inclusive work environment that encourages staff involvement in reconciliation activities and events.

Three teams across Flinders University were also awarded 2022 Flinders Reconciliation Awards for prioritising Reconciliation within their units and championing it to the wider community:

  • Flinders Rural & Remote Health NT, for outstanding efforts in leading activities or projects that promote reconciliation, including employment, research, education, community participation and campus culture.
  • Student Administration Services RAP Working Group, for inspiring work that explores the importance of Welcome to Country and to welcome students more generally. Through a consultative, research-based approach, Kaurna Welcome signage has been created for use in student spaces.
  • The College of Education, Psychology and Social Work RAP Working Group, for whole-of-college commitment to sustained change for Reconciliation and the pursuit of social justice for First Nations peoples across teaching, research and administration.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Students) Professor Romy Lawson presented the Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence and Innovation in Teaching,

Professor Romy Lawson presenting the 2022 Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence and Innovation in Teaching

“I am always happy to celebrate anything to do with teaching and learning,” said Professor Lawson. “Even though we are celebrating a couple of teams and an individual, what we have achieved as a university over the past few years has been nothing short of extraordinary, so congratulations really do need to go to everybody.”

The 2022 Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Innovation in Teaching was awarded to Associate Professor Jonathan Benjamin, Mr Hiro Yoshida, Associate Professor Wendy Van Duivenvoorde and Dr John McCarthy (CHASS) for tailoring student skills development and workforce ready graduates by significantly enhancing the Maritime Archaeology program though an accredited micro-credential in Professional Scientific Diving.

The 2022 Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching was awarded to an individual and a team, recognising teaching excellence displayed in 2022. Dr Mai Ngo (CHASS) was recognised for her personalised and transformational approach to hybrid teaching and support of hybrid learning that influences, motivates and inspires both internal and external students in the TESOL program, with a paramount focus on career-ready graduates’ academic and employability success. From the College of Science and Engineering, Dr David Hobbs, Dr Thomas Vincent, Professor Giselle Rampersad and Dr Vlatka Zivotic-Kukolj were awarded for their work developing authentic industry experience through an immersive five-month Work Integrated Learning (WIL) placement for all students in the College of Science and Engineering that produces job-ready STEM graduates with enhanced employability.

Professor Saint celebrated the bright minds and incredible contributions of Flinders University’s emerging researchers with the 2022 Vice-Chancellor’s Early Career Researcher Awards.

Professor Robert Saint presents the Vice-Chancellor’s Early Career Researcher Awards and the Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in HDR Supervision

“It is our freshest minds – those of our early-career researchers – that often come up with the most innovative research ideas, and have the boundless energy and determination to pursue them,” said Professor Saint.

The awards went to:

  • Stephanie Wong (CEPSW)
  • Laura Roberts (CHASS)
  • Courtney Ryder (CMPH)
  • Hannah Scott (CMPH)
  • Kristie Stefanoska (CMPH)
  • Yohannes Adama Melaku (CMPH)
  • Dhani Dharmaprani (CMPH)
  • Sarah Hunter (CNHS)
  • Xuan Luo (CSE)
  • Aliakbar Gholampour (CSE)

Professor Youhong Tang (CSE) was awarded the 2022 Vice-Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in HDR Supervision in 2022, to recognise the outstanding support he provides to his students.

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