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Campus News : July 2010
14 Campus News July 2010 University of Wollongong www.uow.edu.au Awards, achievements and accolades The University of Wollongong PASS (Peer Assisted Study Sessions) Program has been named the Most Outstanding PASS Program in the world -- the first time the award has been won by an institution outside the United States. The awards are presented every two years in conjunction with the International PASS Conference. UOW's Student Support and Peer Learning Head and PASS National Trainer Sally Rogan accepted the University's award at this year's conference in New Orleans in June. The Outstanding Program Award is the conference's premier accolade and recognises the program which is considered to have made the most sustained and outstanding contribution to student success, demonstrates excellence in every aspect of its operation and has positively influenced the culture of learning at its institution. PASS Programs (under several names) operate extensively in the US, Canada, Great Britain, South Africa, parts of Europe and throughout Australasia. "As you can imagine, the whole PASS team is thrilled with this huge accolade," Ms Rogan said. "These awards have been going for 20 years, so to be the first institution from outside the US to win really is ground- breaking." Ms Rogan said the award judges were impressed by the high-level institutional support for PASS at UOW, the Hygienist receives lifetime award Associate Professor Brian Davies from the School of Health Sciences has been awarded the 2010 International Occupational Hygiene Association (IOHA) Lifetime Achievement Award. The award honours individuals who have made significant contributions to the promotion and development of occupational hygiene practice that improve the health and welfare of working men and women. Professor Davies will receive his award during the eighth IOHA International Conference in Rome in September. As part of the award, Professor Davies will deliver a lecture on occupational hygiene. Professor Davies' career began as an industrial chemist with Australian Iron and Steel and his passion for occupational hygiene developed as he began monitoring coal dust in BHP's coal mines. He became BHP's Chief Occupational Hygienist in 1986, moving to research work on diesel particulate emissions during the 1990s. Professor Davies started his own consultancy during 1993 and worked across many industries. Professor Davies now coordinates UOW's Occupational Health and Safety academic program. He was awarded the Order of Australia in 2005 for his "service to occupational health and hygiene in relation to the coal industry, and through the Australian Institute of Occupational Hygienists". BG Museum Trust appointment Faculty of Creative Arts Dean Professor Amanda Lawson has been appointed to the Australian Museum Trust. Museum Director Frank Howarth said he looked forward to building on the working relationship that already exists between Professor Lawson and the museum. The Trust plays an important role in monitoring the performance of the museum, liaising with stakeholders and acting as an advocate. Professor Lawson's appointment has stemmed from her involvement in the Virtual Museum of the Pacific, which is part of an Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage project between the Australian Museum and UOW. The first step in this project was to build a prototype site displaying more than 400 of the museum's 60,000 objects in its Pacific Cultural Collections. BG Fellowship for geoscientist Geosciences Professor Allan Chivas from UOW's School of Earth and Environmental Sciences is among 17 of Australia's leading scientists who have been honoured with Fellowships at the Australian Academy of Science for their outstanding research. Professor Chivas' work has defined new geochemical tools, both conceptually and by advances in analytical methods, which are now applied worldwide. His work has been consistently published in highly-cited journals including 11 papers in Nature and Science. He has attracted about 4000 citations and his work is commonly used in standard and more general text books. At a recent Frontiers in Science lecture presented at UOW, Professor Chivas highlighted how the increasing salinity of the landscape was becoming a serious problem in many continents, including Australia. He provided information concerning the origin of salt in the landscape and its residence in Australian soils, lakes and groundwaters. BG Literary talent takes flight Professor Leon Kane-Maguire's academic career involves the world of polymers and nanotechnology, but he is also making his mark as an aviation historian and writer. Since cutting back to part-time work with the School of Chemistry, Professor Kane-Maguire has had more time to pursue his passion for aviation history. And he has now been rewarded with the RAAF Heritage Award First Prize in University's leadership role as the national centre for PASS programs in Australasia as well as "the fantastic program we run at campus level". "They were impressed with how student-centred our program is, and by how much support our nomination had from other Australasian universities," she said. "One other university even described our PASS team as the 'rock stars' of Teaching and Learning in Australasia, which the judges thought was great." Ms Rogan said PASS was the cornerstone of the "first year experience" at UOW with the program on offer to 95 per cent of first year students. PASS is an academic support program that targets historically difficult courses. It offers regularly scheduled, out-of-class review sessions to all students enrolled in a targeted course. PASS study sessions are informal and relaxed "super group" learning in which students review lecture notes, discuss readings, develop discipline-specific organisational tools and prepare for examinations. The PASS sessions are facilitated by PASS Leaders -- students who have previously and successfully completed the targeted course and use their experience as successful students to guide and assist newer students make the transition to studying successfully at tertiary level. BG UOW's PASS program rated the world's best Pictured at the PASS awards ceremony in New Orleans in June (from left): UOW PASS Leader Brittany Reeves, Executive Director of the International PASS/SI Centre at the University of Missouri, Kansas City Dr Glen Jacobs; UOW Student Support & Peer Learning Head and Australian National PASS Trainer Sally Rogan and UOW PASS Program Coordinator Kylie Austin. Associate Professor Brian Davies.