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Staff and student successes

Congratulations to all our talented and hardworking staff and students on their funding successes, awards, scholarships, projects and new appointments!

Congratulations to our talented staff and students.
Congratulations to our talented staff and students.

The Pharmaceutical Society of Western Australia has awarded Dr Petra Czarniak, School of Pharmacy, $46,858 for her project ‘Determination of the prevalence and factors influencing the provision of enhanced and extended professional services by pharmacists in Western Australian’.

Professor Simon Pettigrew, School of Psychology and Speech Pathology, Associate Professor Richard Norman, School of Public Health, and Professor Lin Fritschi, School of Public Health, ‘Investigating the strategic options for autonomous vehicle adoption in WA’, Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre, $59,500, 2017.

 Associate Professor Rebecca McKetin, Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor, together with a team of Australian researchers (Professors Dan Lubman, Paul Dietze, Michael Berk, Amanda Baker, Gregory Carter and Dr’s Olivia Dean, Peter Kelly, Peter Higgs, Alyna Turner, Brendan Quinn and Wenbin Liang), has been awarded $1.55m by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) to lead a world-first out-patient trial of a promising new medication, N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC), for dependence on crystalline methamphetamine (‘ice’).

Professor Suzanne Fraser, Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor, and Dr Robyn Dwyer, Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor, have been awarded an Australian Research Council (ARC) grant of $502,000 to conduct a project investigating barriers to the uptake of ‘take-home’ naloxone (THN) for reversal of opioid overdose in Australia. Other project investigators are Professor Paul Dietze (Burnet Institute), Dr Joanne Neale and Professor John Strang (Kings College London).

A second ARC grant of $472,000 has been awarded to Professor Suzanne Fraser and Professor David Moore, Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor, to conduct a study into performance and image enhancing drug (PIED) injecting in Australia. Little is currently known about PIED injecting, which is increasing and is associated with serious health issues including the transmission of blood-borne viruses, especially hepatitis C. Other project investigators are Dr Kate Seear (Monash University), Dr Campbell Aitken (Burnet Institute) and Ms Kay Stanton (Darebin Community Health Service).


The new Healthway Allied Health Professionals Australia (AHPA) Graduate Scholarship recipients for 2017 have been announced, and both went to School of Public Health graduates. Ashleigh Parnell will be completing her scholarship with the Public Health Advocacy Institute of Western Australia (PHAIWA) on Corporate Social Responsibility tactics in sport, and Corie Gray from the Collaboration for Evidence, Research, and Impact in Public Health (CERIPH) will be examining factors influencing HIV testing in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CaLD) groups in Perth, which extends her successful Honours research and is linked to the Gilead grant the School of Public Health received in 2016.


Mrs Michelle Quail, School of Psychology and Speech Pathology, has been awarded an Australian Award for University Teaching and was the winner for the Early Career category. This was one of 16 national awards presented across 8 categories and was presented at a ceremony at Old Parliament House in Canberra on 1 December 2016.

Mrs Pascale Ng, School of Pharmacy, received the prestigious Eric Kirk Memorial Award from the Pharmaceutical Society of Western Australia.

Mr Malcolm Roberts, School of Pharmacy, received the Pharmaceutical Society of Western Australia Lifetime Achievement Award.

Professor Samar Aoun, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedicine, received The Eleanor Mounsher Medal in recognition of her outstanding commitment, dedication and service to the Motor Neurone Disease Association of WA, and to people living with Motor Neurone Disease and their families.

School of Pharmacy alumna, Stephanie Teoh, was the lead on a project that has been highly commended in the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards (ACHS) Quality Improvement Awards 2016. The project, ‘From reflective learning to action: Reducing medication-related problem with an innovative, interdisciplinary, site-specific, targeted education model’ highlighted the importance of pharmacists in preventing medication-related problems (MRPs) in daily clinical duties.

Professor Nikos Ntoumanis has been honoured with Curtin’s John De Later Award for Research Leadership, which recognises excellence in research, as well as the title of John Curtin Distinguished Professor.


Dr Melissa Davis, School of Psychology and Speech Pathology, has been appointed to the National Psychology Examination Committee.

Dr Elizabeth Newnham was recently appointed as a Curtin Research Fellow in the School of Psychology and Speech Pathology. After completing her MPsych/PhD at UWA, Elizabeth undertook postdoctoral fellowships at Harvard University and the University of Oxford. Her central research focus is child and adolescent mental health in conflict and disaster-affected settings, and she has led studies in China, Nepal, Hong Kong, Sierra Leone and Australia. Elizabeth has received a number of prestigious research grants and awards, including an NHMRC Sidney Sax Fellowship. She holds a concurrent Research Fellow position at the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard University.


Dr Ranil Coorey, School of Public Health, hosted a Food Science & Technology information session in Sri Lanka on Tuesday 10 January 2017. The session was held at the office of a Curtin’s student recruitment representatives (3WGE Colombo). The event was aimed at those who are looking to upskill or are interested in a career in the food science industry. The session was reported to be a success with a number of queries generated for our BSc Nutrition and Food Science and MSc Food Science & Technology courses. Health Sciences International would like to thank Ranil for his time in hosting this seminar activity.

News from our students

Alexandra Staniland, Charlene Martin and Alicia Drew, School of Psychology and Speech Pathology, won joint third place in this year’s Undergraduate Statistics Class Project competition.The competition is sponsored by the Consortium for the Advancement of Undergraduate Statistics Education (CAUSE) and the American Statistical Association, and attracts entries from students at universities all over the world.

In addition to a certificate, Alexandra, Charlene and Alicia will each receive a cash prize, and an opportunity to present at the annual CAUSE Electronic Undergraduate Statistics Research Conference. Furthermore, their projects will be featured on the CAUSE web site and announced in the Amstat News journal published by the American Statistical Association.

The students were taught and mentored by Mr Peter Allen, School of Psychology and Speech Pathology.

Ben Burke, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedicine, was nominated for Pearson’s Student of the Year. A video about Ben can be viewed here.

The recipient of the Pancare 2016 Lord Richard Williams Award is Aleksandra Adamska, a PhD student from the Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute, School of Biomedical Sciences. You can view Aleksandra’s abstract for her work here.

Lisa Rooke, School of Public Health, won the Leadership in Health Promotion Award at the recent Australian Health Promotion Association (WA Branch) Annual General Meeting.

Physiotherapy student, Rebekah Weller was the first female soloist over the line at the Karma Resorts Rottnest Channel Swim.