Graduate Students Association presents Student of the Year Awards

December 13 / 125

Ms Visopiano Sanyü from the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences receiving her GSA Award from Governor of Victoria and former Chancellor Alex Chernov.
Ms Visopiano Sanyü from the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences receiving her GSA Award from Governor of Victoria and former Chancellor Alex Chernov.

The Graduate Students Association (GSA) presented their Graduate Student of the Year Awards at a ceremony last month.

PhD candidate Ms Rosey Billington, from the School of Languages and Linguistics and Doctor of Medicine and Master of Public Health student Ms Visopiano Sanyü from the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, were the recipients of the 2013 Graduate Student of the Year Award.

The awards celebrate graduates who have excelled and made a visible difference, standing out in the graduate community as role models.

Nominees for the awards were judged by a committee for their contributions to the graduate student community, the University or to the broader community, for demonstrated academic commitment or excellence in their field, and for acting as inspirational role models.

Ms Billington said it was a big surprise and an honour to find out she was one of the award winners.

“I know there are so many graduate students who work hard to support their fellow graduate students… so to be chosen from among so many active and involved graduates is very flattering,” she said.

“I think this award is an excellent way of recognising and validating the efforts and enthusiasm of so many graduate students who make their time at the university as rewarding as possible for themselves and others.”

Ms Billington’s PhD research focuses on the sound systems of minority and endangered languages, on the ways academic research can help to preserve these languages, and fit with a community’s own goals for developing language material.

Ms Sanyü said it was a great honour to be presented with the award alongside Ms Billington.
“It was lovely to have my parents at the presentation, along with all other nominees, the Chancellor, the Governor and the Selection Committee,” she said.

“I feel very proud to receive this award on behalf of our volunteers at Realising Education and Access in Collaborative Health.”

Ms Sanyü was recognised for her commitments to social justice and global health which have been realised through her involvement with REACH (Realising Education and Access in Collaborative Health), a student-driven health initiative that promotes social change.

Her work with REACH and the University of Melbourne has seen the launch of Australia’s first student-run clinic, a multidisciplinary, after hours service which sees clients from refugee and migrant backgrounds.

Several Graduate Students also received commendations.

They were:

•    David Douglas
•    Melissa Fedrigo
•    Amy Frew
•    Anna Cordelia Hood
•    Annabel Short
•    Humberto Vazquez Cervantes
•    Andrew Watt

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