Vice-Chancellor and President's Awards for Excellence

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Vice-Chancellor and President's Awards for Excellence


Each year, through the Vice-Chancellor and President’s Awards for Excellence, exceptional achievements are recognised and rewarded in the key areas of:

  • learning and teaching
  • research
  • engagement
  • service

In 2018, there were six Vice-Chancellor and President’s Awards for Excellence presented.

For Excellence in Learning & Teaching

Dr Wayne Graham
Lecturer in Management
USC Business School
Faculty of Arts, Business and Law

Dr Graham was nominated for this award for his innovative teaching and strategic approach to course design and delivery. Dr Graham is an exemplar of effective and collaborative learning and teaching practice.

Dr Graham is recognised for his commitment to utilising new techniques and adopting technological innovations. The use of a flipped classroom approach to teaching and his leadership in this area has further in​​spired staff engagement and advancement of teaching, and ultimately assisted in shaping the learning outcome​s of students.

​In addition, Dr Graham’s strong corporate citizenship and ability to combine research and teaching strengths have helped position the School and the University for future success.​​

For Excellence in Learning & Teaching (Sessional)

Mrs Leone Smith
Sessional staff member
School of Nursing, Midwifery & Paramedicine
Faculty of Science, Health, Education and Engineering

Mrs Smith was nominated for this award for her work in sharing cultural knowledge and providing curriculum advice on embedding Indigenous perspectives in nursing and midwifery programs at USC. Mrs Smith’s skill in linking USC with local indigenous health service providers and local community has directly impacted on student engagement with learning and graduate outcomes.

​Mrs Smith has been recognised for the work she has done with USC Close the Gap celebrations, facilitating opportunities for students to participate in local Indigenous health promotion events and, more broadly, her passionate advocacy for Indigenous higher education opportunities and success, promoting cultural awareness and understanding and improvement of the health status of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Her leadership and scholarship in this space is highly regarded and the influence on teaching practice within the discipline is notable.​

For Excellence in Engagement​​

Professor Mary Katsikitis
Professor & Discipline Leader in Psychology
School of Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts, Business and Law

Professor Katsikitis is acknowledged for the strategic and productive partnerships that she has developed both nationally and internationally that have been of substantial benefit to USC. Professor Katsikitis holds appointments on various national boards and committees which indicates the esteem in which she is held within the profession.

​Professor Katsikitis has led the establishment of undergraduate and postgraduate psychology on the Sunshine Coast, as well as established networks and undertaken projects and research which are of significant value to the community.

​​​For Excellence in Research

Professor Paul Southgate
Professor of Sustainable Tropical Aquaculture
Faculty of Science, Health, Education and Engineering

Professor Southgate has been acknowledged for his strong performance in the USC flagship area of aquaculture and agricultural research for development in the developing world.

Professor Southgate has been successful in securing large amounts of competitive grant funding, and has been instrumental in providing strategic leadership, advice and input into the USC research agenda.

Furthermore, Professor Southgate has attracted excellent academic talent to the University, thereby assisting with the building of significant capacity and quality through teams and individuals that contribute to USC’s excellent research trajectory.

For Excellence in Research (Early Career Researcher)

Dr Kylie Scales
Lecturer in Animal Ecology
School of Science and Engineering
Faculty of Science, Health, Education and Engineering

A rising star in research at USC, Dr Scales has developed important research linkages with national and international partners. Dr Scales’ strong publication record in high quality and high impact journals contributes significantly to USC’s Strategic Goal of positioning as a leader in the global university environment via a top-100 university ranking under 50 years of age.

Dr Scales’ ability to build strategic partnerships for USC, has led to her current and continuing success at USC.

​​For Excellence in Service

Moreton Bay Design and Construction Team

​Scott Dukeson, Peter Embleton, Zeyad Elkojje, Christina Jackson, Peter Knuth, Lisa May, Lizzie Orphan, Swain Roberts, Kate Robertson, Trish Watson and Carolyn Wilkinson were nominated for this award as part of their involvement with the Moreton Bay design and construction project.

The team has been acknowledged for their contribution to the largest building project ever undertaken by the University. The challenging and demanding nature of this project, the tight timeframes, the complexity of the relationships involved and the work required outside of normal business hours has required significant dedication from the team.

This project is a unique, once in a lifetime opportunity for USC and the team has taken on an extraordinary amount of work which will benefit the University for decades to come.​

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