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Curtin University
Vice-Chancellor
Note to staff

26 April 2016

 
 

I have just returned from the annual graduation events at our Sarawak (Miri) campus.  Around 400 students graduated across a range of degree programs, with strong numbers in both Engineering and Business.

It was a pleasure to visit the campus again.  I congratulate Professor Jim Mienczakowski and all the staff in Miri on what is being achieved at the campus.  A new Engineering and Science Building is close to completion, and a major BioTech facility – which should be of interest to a number of research groups at Bentley – is taking shape.  During our visit, the Miri staff participated in the first stage of the consultation for our 2017-2020 Strategic Plan. The input was very valuable and will help us to articulate a plan that reflects Curtin’s global reach and aspirations.

Curtin’s success in the Nature Index

Curtin has been announced as the most collaborative of the Australian universities and the biggest Australian mover in the Nature Index results for 2016.

The Index is a database of information collated from research articles published in a group of 68 high-quality natural science journals. It is built on an institution’s contributions to about 60,000 high-quality papers each year and counts both the number of papers and the relative contribution of the authors.

The 2016 Nature Index identifies that overall Curtin has very strong collaborations in Australia as well as key international collaborations, and identifies our University as the most collaborative of the Australian institutions included.

The papers included in the Nature Index are important contributors to our Academic Ranking of World Universities performance, which currently places us at 270 in the world.

The University is widely recognised for its achievements in applied research and to have our dedication to creating strong, high impact, collaborative research reflected by the publisher of the leading international scientific journal Nature, is a wonderful achievement.

The results are a testament to the strong contributions and achievements of Curtin researchers and postgraduate research students who are driven to undertake applied and globally relevant research that results in outcomes that benefit the broader community locally, nationally and globally.

You can read more about this achievement here.

Greater Curtin sod turning ceremony

The Minister for Education, Peter Collier, participated in a sod-turning ceremony at our Bentley Campus last week, to mark the commencement of the first stage of the Greater Curtin Master Plan – the Main Street Project.

The Project will centralise public transport, making access to the campus easier with greater priority for pedestrian and bicycle access. A secondary road will also be constructed, connecting Kent Street and Hayman Road, along with an urbanised, “shared street” at the northern end of the campus.

On completion, the Greater Curtin Master Plan will open up the campus and create a public realm to connect staff, students, industry and the wider community. This is an exciting time for Curtin and I look forward to sharing more milestones with you as they occur.

With Minister Collier at the Greater Curtin sod turning ceremony.

With Minister Collier at the Greater Curtin sod turning ceremony.

Heritage Festival launch

I recently attended the launch of the 2016 Western Australian Heritage Festival hosted by Curtin and the National Trust of Western Australia. The launch took place at the former Old Perth Boys School, now Curtin University St Georges Terrace, and showcased the outcomes of the extensive refurbishment completed there by the University.

The launch was attended by former Governor Hon Ken Michael AC, Heritage Minister Albert Jacob and National Trust Chair Hon Michael Murray AM QC, among other guests.

It is wonderful to see Curtin facilities being showcased to the external community and I encourage staff to make use of our newest CBD presence whenever possible.

With former Governor Ken Michael, Heritage Minister Albert Jacob  and National Trust Chair Michael Murray at the launch.

With former Governor Ken Michael, Heritage Minister Albert Jacob and National Trust Chair Michael Murray at the launch.

Curtin Commercial Innovation Awards

The 2016 Curtin Commercial Innovation Awards are now open for submissions.

These Awards have developed into one of the most significant innovation events in Western Australia.  They directly link with Curtin’s vision of conducting research with real world impact and closely align with the Federal Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda.

First prize consists of $15,000 cash with seven category prizes of $5,000.

I encourage staff and students to submit an application before entries close on 6 May. Past finalists have gone on to launch new products and services based on Curtin research. To apply or see examples of previous award winners, please visit the Commercial Innovation Awards website.

John Curtin Medal nominations

Nominations are also now open for this year’s John Curtin Medal, the University’s highest non-academic award. I encourage all staff to consider nominating someone from the external community who you believe demonstrates John Curtin’s attributes of vision, leadership and community service.

For more information, please visit the website or contact Julia Nicol, Director Public Relations.

Nominations must be received prior to 5pm on Thursday 16 June 2016. Please note that nominations should be kept strictly confidential. Candidates should not be contacted for information regarding their nomination.

Open Day volunteers needed

Open Day is our largest student recruitment event and a day when all areas of the University come together with a common purpose. The event is being held on Sunday 31 July this year, and we are looking for volunteers to make the day a huge success.

All professional staff members at HEW level 7 or below who volunteer on the day will be offered Time Off in Lieu (TOIL). Please discuss your TOIL arrangements with your line manager.

I encourage all staff to be part of Open Day.  Those who wish to volunteer can contact Bobbie Simpson via openday@curtin.edu.au.

Vaccinations available for Curtin staff

Curtin is again offering staff the opportunity to get a free Quadrivalent (4-strain) flu vaccination through the Curtin Health Service at the Bentley Campus.  Vaccination is recommended by the Department of Heath as the best way to protect yourself from this illness.

Vaccinations can be booked through the online booking system, or you can be vaccinated by your normal GP or pharmacist and seek reimbursement from the University (up to $40).  More information is available on the HR website.

Other points of interest

At last week’s Senior Executive Team meeting, the revised Intellectual Property Policy and Procedures were presented by Professor Graeme Wright (Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research) and Russell Nicholls (Deputy Director IP Commercialisation). The documents will now be circulated for consultation across the University.

Marco Schultheis (Chief Strategy Officer) and Greg Knight (Director, Business Intelligence and Analysis) from the Office of Strategy and Planning demonstrated the new Business Intelligence dashboards. I congratulate Marco, Greg and their colleagues for the work on these dashboards. They provide a rich amount of data that will be of considerable use to schools and faculties.

Ian Callahan (Chief Operating Officer) and Lisa Spiers (Director, Development) provided an update on the Curtin University Midland Campus.  Construction on the new facility is anticipated to commence in 2017 and will be operational in 2019. It will be the major clinical school for the Curtin Medical School students during their clinical years. The Midland campus will also facilitate clinical placements for nursing and allied health students and support the University’s efforts to expand the provision of higher education opportunities in the Midland region.

 
 

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