Universities acknowledged in Engagement Australia 2020 Excellence Awards

Universities acknowledged in Engagement Australia 2020 Excellence Awards

Eight universities and individuals across four states have been recognised for their exceptional university community-building and economic-advancement initiatives in the Engagement Australia 2020 Excellence Awards.

The awards, hosted from Adelaide’s new Lot Fourteen innovation precinct this evening (Tuesday, December 1) and sponsored by the Federal Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources, were held ‘virtually’ for the first time due to COVID-19 and associated travel restrictions.

In its first year of transition from the Business-Higher Education Round Table (BHERT) Awards, the inaugural Engagement Australia Awards attracted 124 submissions from 35 universities across Australia and New Zealand.

Engagement Australia Chair and President, Prof Jim Nyland, said the awards identify and celebrate the transformative engagement activities undertaken by universities that demonstrate far-reaching impact and innovation in Australia and New Zealand.

“There has never been a more important time for Australian universities to become deeply engaged with their communities, and to align these transformational operations with their strategic priorities – from research and industry engagement to the health and well-being of the communities in which they serve,” Prof Nyland said.

“Our judging panel commented on the exceptional quality of the 2020 nominations, and even awarded a joint winner in the Outstanding Leadership in Engagement category due to the high calibre of the individuals nominated.

“It’s also notable that three of the successful universities and individuals are from outside the capital cities.”

The winners

Excellence in Alumni Engagement
Monash University: Global Discovery Program Study Tour
The award recognises outstanding contributions to enhancing the quality alumni engagement and support in higher education.

Excellence in Community Engagement
University of South Australia: Pain Revolution Program
The award recognises outstanding collaborations between communities, higher education and industry for societal benefit. Emphasis placed on partnerships that engage rural, regional, urban, disadvantaged or marginalised groups within Australia and New Zealand.

Excellence in Community Engagement: Closing the Gap
University of Sydney: Poche Oral Health Program
The award recognises outstanding collaborations between communities, higher education and industry that directly reduce disadvantage among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Excellence in Industry Engagement
University of Melbourne: CrowdCARE Program
The award recognises outstanding contributions to enhancing the quality of learning and teaching in higher education by members of tertiary education institutions, community and industry partners.

Award for Excellence in Student Engagement
Federation University Australia (Ballarat): IBM – Federation University Australia Collaboration
The award recognises outstanding contributions that improve student engagement on campus, with industry and/or in community.

Outstanding Engagement for Research Impact
Charles Sturt University (Bathurst): Novel Pest Management Program
Recognising excellence in research and development activity, that makes a substantial difference to the community, or Australian prosperity, undertaken jointly by researchers in tertiary education institutes and partners in the community, business and industry.

Outstanding Leadership in Engagement (2 winners)
Dr Anita Smith: La Trobe University
Professor Roger Stone: University of Southern Queensland (Toowoomba)

The award recognises an individual who has made notable contributions to engagement above and beyond that expected for their role, resulting in sustained and impactful partnerships.