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Curtin University
Note to staff

March 14, 2008


Update on teaching and learning spaces at the Bentley campus

As the new semester unfolds, teaching staff will be interested to know that Curriculum 2010 is currently working with staff and students in each Faculty to conduct a first semester forum on Engaging Learning Spaces. These forums will provide the opportunity to hear from staff and students on the sorts of spaces currently available and potentially needed to ensure engaging face-to-face teaching in the various discipline areas. More details will be provided shortly.

In addition, there have been ongoing enhancements to audio-visual and iLecture facilities: 35 theatres are equipped with data projectors, computers, audio and overhead projectors; 73 classrooms have data projection with DVD/VCR control; 20 computers in lecterns will shortly be installed in buildings 201 and 501; and 40 venues have iLecture with screen-recording capability. Visit iLectures for more information.

Curriculum 2010 update

2008 continues to be a busy year for the C2010 team. Approximately half of Curtin’s courses and majors are now participating in comprehensive course reviews. Other focuses this year are postgraduate courses, course sustainability, and course information tools. For this year’s project plan visit the C2010 website.

Rio Tinto announcement

I am pleased to advise that recently, the University entered into a $10.5 million partnership with Rio Tinto to develop a world class innovation centre for strategic research and development in materials and sensing in mining.

The Centre for Materials and Sensing in Mining will be based at Curtin and will provide unique opportunities for our researchers and research students to enhance the most advanced mining systems in the world. The Centre will also be a magnet that attracts talented scientists and engineers seeking quality research facilities in a global industry focussed environment.

It will involve collaboration with key research areas across the University and will include partnerships with a range of highly respected international research institutes.

The Centre, lead by Dr Vladimir Golovanevskiy, will be beneficial to Rio Tinto as its main work will be in the development, testing and deployment of technologies with specific application to Rio Tinto’s operations, in particular, open pit mining operations and associated transport efficiency issues will be addressed.

The establishment of the Centre also consolidates Curtin’s position as the leading provider of resources research and education in Western Australia.

Memorandum of Understanding with the Chamber of Minerals and Energy

I am also pleased to advise that Curtin has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Chamber of Minerals and Energy (CME) Collaboration in Tertiary Education and Research for the Benefit of the Resources Industry. Projects to be undertaken under the MOU are to build the capacity of the minerals and energy sector to respond to the current skills shortage. Four key strategies have been identified to achieve this aim which are as follows:

  • To strengthen the network between Curtin and the CME, including relevant stakeholders, in addressing the skills shortage via program development and delivery models etc.
  • To position Western Australia, nationally and internationally, in education and R&D by supporting the development of Curtin’s Resources and Chemistry Precinct.
  • Create a strategic direction for resource education and develop a framework for the continuous engagement between both parties that ensures the sustainability of Curtin’s Western Australian School of Mines as a first class provider of mining and minerals education and research.
  • To provide partnership representation on boards of mutual interest between Curtin and the Chamber of Minerals and Energy.

This MOU is significant as it will enhance alignment between education and research outcomes with the resources industry, and increase the quantity and quality of students that meet industry’s employment and research needs. It will also facilitate the development of sustainable strategies for all minerals and energy related programs. The signing of this agreement demonstrates another example of Curtin’s leadership in the provision of education and research in the resources, minerals, chemistry, energy and engineering sectors.

2008 Curtin New Inventor Competition

Following the very successful inaugural event last year, I am pleased to announce the first round of the 2008 Curtin New Inventor Competition. Curtin staff and students are invited to submit applications for inventions arising out of their work or study.

The winning entry will receive a prize of $10,000 and there will be special commendation awards granted at the discretion of the judges. Prize money can be used on any item of expenditure that further supports the research underpinning the submission.

In addition to the prize money, all entrants will have the opportunity to discuss their innovation with the IP Commercialisation team and other experts who will be available to provide technical and commercial advice and guidance. In particular, the overall winner will be teamed up with an experienced mentor.

The competition is open to all Curtin staff and students. Entries must be submitted by Friday 4 April 2008. Full details can be found on the IP Commercialisation website.

This is a significant initiative as the real potential is more than just the prize, it is the opportunity to be part of a commercially successful venture.

International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day, held on Saturday 8 March, provided the occasion for women across the world to come together to celebrate the gains and achievements women have made. It also provided the opportunity for the University to announce that Curtin has been awarded the prestigious Employer of Choice for Women Citation for the seventh consecutive year. The Award endorses Curtin’s contribution to the recognition and advancement of women in the work place and was presented by the Equal Opportunity Women in the Workplace Agency. Curtin was cited as having exceeded the Award criteria this year and raised the standards by establishing and developing equal opportunities for female staff and students. A number of specific initiatives and programs for women have already been developed to create a more balanced gender ratio in our staff profile.

For example the establishment of certain initiatives and programs such as Curtin’s Leadership Program and Curtin’s Women’s Program have been developed to increase and support the number of women in management positions.

The newly-opened Maureen Bickley Centre for Women in Leadership and Management was established by the Graduate School of Business to redress the absence of women from leadership teams. The opening of the Centre, named after Maureen Bickley (1949-2007), who campaigned tirelessly for gender equity, highlights our commitment towards researching sustainable solutions to encourage and retain women in senior roles.

Strengthening our Alumni

Our alumni are a valuable resource for the University and it is the responsibility of the Office of Alumni Relations to maintain up-to-date contact and professional details of our graduates. With these details we can support all areas of the University to market and promote Curtin through targeted campaigns and profiling of our high achieving alumni. We can also organise and support networking events for them to facilitate lifelong relationships with each other and the University.

To help the Office of Alumni Relations to maintain the accuracy and validity of its database, staff are encouraged to provide the names and contact details of alumni, particularly notable graduates, to the Office. Also please encourage all known alumni to let the Office know of their current contact details either by email or on the alumni website.

Your support is greatly appreciated.

For more information, please contact the Alumni Relations Office on extension 3113.

Earth Hour

At 8pm on 29 March 2008, businesses and households in over 24 capital cities around the world will be turning off their lights for one hour to deliver a simple message about the connection between energy usage and climate change and that mass participation can help improve our planet’s future.

Earth Hour was established in 2007 by three core partners in Sydney – World Wildlife Fund Australia, Fairfax Media and Leo Burnett Sydney – to highlight solutions and encourage involvement across all levels of society to address global warming. Over 2.2 million people in Sydney participated and the event captured the fascination of the world.

Curtin is taking a leading role in WA’s Earth Hour activities and I encourage you, your friends and family to participate in this symbolic event at 8pm on 29 March 2008.

To support the awareness of Earth Hour, Curtin will also be running this advertisement in tomorrow’s West Australian newspaper.

Earth Hour advertisement

When you leave work on Friday 28 March, please ensure that all non-essential lighting and equipment such as computers, printers and faxes are switched off. We will be measuring our energy consumption prior to and during Earth Hour to demonstrate how small changes can reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and slow global warming.

Staff and student safety is of great importance and to this end, street and interior/exterior stairwell lighting will not be reduced during this time to ensure everyone’s security. Additional security will also be in place to ensure the safety of all visitors to campus on the night.

Regular updates will be made as to how Curtin is embracing this important event on the Curtin earthhour website. For information about how other cities around the world are planning their own Earth Hour event, visit

Your feedback and suggestions about how Curtin can adopt the principles of Earth Hour for the future are welcome and can be sent to

Earth Hour logo



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