Distinguished Companion of the University (April 2017)
Dawn Oelrich was named a Distinguished Companion of the University in April 2017 in recognition of her significant contribution as curator of USC's art collection and USC's art gallery from 2004 to 2015.
Dawn has significantly contributed to the university as curator of USC’s art collection and the USC Art Gallery. For 11 years, Dawn ran the Gallery and oversaw the development and growth of the USC Art Collection as a significant cultural asset.
From her commencement at USC in 2004 to her retirement in 2015, Dawn played an instrumental role brokering with significant art collectors in the region to secure major donations, and increased the value of the USC collection to more than $4 million dollars.
Dawn was influential in bringing to life USC’s vision of having art, architecture and environment aligned through our campuses. The many exhibitions and public programs Dawn presented were strategically aligned to the University’s imperative to strengthen engagement with our communities. She also instigated an Australian Decorative and Fine Art Society Sunshine Coast Young Arts Scholarship for students enrolled in their second year of study, which contributed greatly to USC’s goals in capacity building.