Media Advisory August 20

RUGBY COACH TALKS ABOUT LIFE AT THE TOP
Wales rugby coach Warren Gatland, a University of Waikato alumnus, will talk about his life on and off the field with Radio Sports’ Nigel Yalden in the fourth of the University of Waikato’s Winter Lecture Series. Warren Gatland played for Waikato and the All Blacks and went on to have a successful coaching career in New Zealand and overseas. Most recently, he’s been appointed coach for next year’s British and Irish Lions tour to Australia. The ‘lecture’ takes place at the university’s Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts, Wednesday 22 August, 6-7pm. It is free and open to the public. 
 
THREE DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI HONOURED AT WAIKATO UNIVERSITY
A trio of New Zealanders will be presented with University of Waikato Distinguished Alumni Awards this week. Rugby’s Warren Gatland, chair of the Productivity Commission Murray Sherwin and the director of Anglican Action Karen Morrison-Hume will be officially recognised for their work on Friday night August 24. Warren Gatland completed his teacher training at Waikato and taught in primary and secondary schools until rugby became his full-time career. Murray Sherwin studied economics and graduated with a Masters in Social Sciences before beginning a long career with the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, followed by 10 years with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. Karen Morrison-Hume graduated with a degree in Social Sciences in 1997 and shortly afterwards took up the directorship at what was then Anglican Social Services. She is a leading proponent of “justice through service” and was one of the key people behind the creation of the Te Ara Hou social services village in Hamilton. The awards are presented at a black-tie, invitation-only dinner at the university’s Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts.
 
MOST IMPROVED OLYMPIC NATIONS AT LONDON 2012
Iran, Hungary and New Zealand, step forward. These three are among the most improved nations in the London 2012 Olympic medal tally, according to a University of Waikato number-cruncher. Associate Professor David Coy teaches accounting at Waikato Management School and has diced and sliced medal hauls for the past four Olympics on the basis of each participating country’s GDP, population size, and Olympic squad size. His calculations are based on five points for a gold medal, three points for a silver and one point for a bronze. The nations that improved most compared with the 2008 Beijing Olympics were Hungary which increased its medal count from 10 to 17, medal points from 33 to 57, and overall ranking from 33rd to 10th, and New Zealand (9 to 13 medals, 23 to 41 points, and 27th to 15th position). Calculating medal points based on per capita GDP and population size together, the medals table reveals the same countries in the top five in London as in Beijing -- Ethiopia, China, Kenya, Russia and Ukraine. Dr Coy’s full analysis with tables is available on request.
 
UNPOPULAR BUT NECESSARY IDEAS – THE FUTURE OF HAMILTON CITY
Waikato University Professor of Environmental Planning Bob Evans says there are three things Hamilton should do to ensure survival of its city centre. Speaking at the third of the University of Waikato’s Winter Lectures last week, he said all new development outside Hamilton’s built-up area should be stopped, all new and planned road construction should be halted, and car use and parking should be constrained in favour of bus lanes, bike and walk-ways; and “discriminating” in favour of inner city developments. He said these steps may be controversial and unpopular, but were necessary for the city’s future. “We need to stop neglecting the city centre and start encouraging people to live there - that’s never going to happen if there is cheap housing on the city limits. If we lose the city centre, Hamilton is finished.”
 
WAIKATO MASTERS STUDENT WINS BRIAN PERRY SCHOLARSHIP
University of Waikato Master of Science student Aaron Huesser has been awarded a prestigious scholarship, which will give him $5000 towards his study costs. The Brian Perry Charitable Trust Graduate Scholarship in Science and Engineering was established by the Perry Foundation in 1999, with the first scholarship awarded in 2002. The scholarship is awarded annually to an applicant who demonstrates high academic calibre, coupled with leadership potential, involvement in team situations, sporting interests and community involvement. Growing up in rural Taranaki, Aaron developed an appreciation and passion for the environment. Surrounded by natural energy producers he also gained an enthusiasm for the energy industry, which sparked his interest in the Earth sciences.

MYSTERY OF THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS
The mystery surrounding the ancient Dead Sea Scrolls will be the focus of lecture being held this week to celebrate 25 years of Religious Studies at the University of Waikato. The lecture will be presented by former Waikato University Religious Studies and History Senior Lecturer Dr Joan Taylor, who is now a Professor of Christian Origins and the Second Temple Judaism at King’s College London.
The Scrolls are a collection of more than 800 biblical manuscripts found between 1946 and 1956 on the northwest shore of the Dead Sea. They are known to be the earliest surviving copies of biblical and extra-biblical documents and are of great historical and religious significance. Dr Taylor is one of the world’s experts on the Scrolls and their significance. The Mystery of the Dead Sea Scrolls seminar will be held on Tuesday 21 August, from 6-7.30pm in the S1.02 Lecture theatre, S Block at the University of Waikato. 
 
PERTH PHD STUDENTS USE HI-TECH WAIKATO UNIVERSITY EQUIPMENT
Two PhD students from Perth’s Curtin University have been at the University of Waikato over the past month, using unique equipment from the Department of Earth & Ocean Sciences. Liping Liu and Ni Tao have been using the Helium Extraction Line and the Fission Track Microscope alongside Waikato Senior Research Fellow Dr Martin Danisik. “Both pieces of equipment are rare, and Waikato University is the only one of two universities in the southern hemisphere, and one of few worldwide, to have both pieces of equipment in one location,” says Dr Danisik. Liping and Ni are working on projects that include testing mineral samples to find out how long ago they reached the Earth’s surface. Some of Ni’s samples were taken from Zhangjiajie National Forest Park in China. Rumour has it that this area’s stunning landscape inspired the directors to create the floating Hallelujah Mountains seen in the Avatar film.

PŌWHIRI TO WELCOME GREAT RACE CREWS
The Waikato University Gallagher Great Race crews have been named – full of New Zealand rep rowers but without our Olympians, though Zoe Stevenson was a reserve for London 2012. The Waikato University men’s crew is Richard Harrison (captain), Tobias Wehr-Candler, Duncan Grant, Hayden Cohen, Shaun Kirkham, Adam Tripp, Mackenzie Mackie, Will Meats, Ivan Pavich (coxswain). Waikato University women: Alyce Pulford (captain), Georgia Perry, Kayla Pratt, Zoe Stevenson, Linda Matthews, Briar Murphy, Claudia Hyde, Ashleigh Hodge, Caleb Shepherd (coxswain). The crews will race against eights from Queensland and Sydney universities. All crews will be welcomed at the official Great Race pōwhiri on September 6 at 10.30am at Te Kohinga Mārama Marae on campus.
 
OKTA CONCERT TO INCLUDE WORLD PREMIERES
Waikato’s contemporary music ensemble OKTA will present three world premieres at its concert this week. They’re Canadian film music composer Teresa Connor’s new collaborative multi-media piece, Waikato music lecturer David Griffiths’ new cello sonata, which will be performed by the Tennant- Austin duo, and alumna Rachael Morgan’s string quartet “Interiors”. Inspired by the music of Italian composer Giacinto Scelsi, Morgan’s work explores the timbral possibilities of the single note. “The concert will be an eclectic blend of 20th century classics and cutting edge premieres,” says Mike Williams, Senior Lecturer in the Music programme at Waikato. The OKTA concert is on Thursday 23 August, 7.30pm at the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts. Tickets are $10 adults, $5 students on the door.
 
TWO WAIKATO STAFF MEMBERS NAMED ON NEW COUNCIL ARTS FORUM
A University of Waikato lecturer and the manager of the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts have been named on a new Hamilton City Council arts forum. Dr Ann Hardy, a Senior Lecturer in Screen and Media Studies, and Jeremy Bell, the Academy manager, are two of 12 Hamilton people named on the forum. The forum will oversee the goals set out in the city’s arts agenda and will develop and guide the agenda, act as a think-tank, provide strategic direction and advocate on behalf of the city’s arts community.
 
WAIKATO UNIVERSITY ROTORUA AND TAURANGA INFO EVENINGS
Tauranga and nearby high school students considering tertiary study next year can attend an information evening tomorrow night (Tuesday 21 August) hosted by the University of Waikato. It’s taking place from 6-7.30pm at Baycourt, Durham Street, Tauranga and students and parents can find out about subjects, degrees, scholarships, entrance requirements and accommodation options. Faculty and recruitment staff will be there to discuss programmes and answer questions. For more information, contact the University’s Tauranga Recruitment Adviser Andy Howells, 07 577 0620 ext 6136, or andyh@waikato.ac.nz.

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