Media Advisory November 18
SPECIAL GRADUATION CEREMONY TO BE HELD AT HOPUHOPU
Eighteen University of Waikato MBA students will graduate from the Waikato-Tainui College for Research and Development at Hopuhopu on Friday. The proceedings will be opened by Waikato Endowed Colleges Trust chairperson John Heremia and Chancellor of the University of Waikato the Rt Hon Jim Bolger. Kīngi Tūheitia will present the college taonga at the ceremony. The keynote speaker is Emeritus Professor Sir Mason Durie. The graduation is on Friday, November 22 from 12pm-5pm at Waikato-Tainui College for Research and Development Hopuhopu Complex.
DR SHAUN BARKER WINS WALDEMAR LINDGREN AWARD
University of Waikato Senior Lecturer Dr Shaun Barker has been awarded an international young scientist award by the Society of Economic Geologists (SEG). The Waldemar Lindgren Award is made annually by SEG to a young scientist whose published research represents an outstanding contribution to the science of economic geology at an early stage of their career. Dr Barker has published strongly in the international literature and this award recognises in part his use of new and emerging analytical techniques to address various problems that had previously been difficult to solve. Many of the previous 46 recipients of the Lindgren Award have gone on to distinguished careers in academia, industry, or government research organisations (or some combination of these). Dr Barker has been invited to receive his award at next year’s SEG conference in Colorado in September 2014. A citation and acceptance speech from the 2014 meeting will be published in the journal Economic Geology.
UNIVERSITY TO HOST TITANIUM CONFERENCE
In partnership with the University of Waikato, the Titanium Industry Development Association (TiDA) will host theInternational Titanium Powder Processing, Consolidation and Metallurgy Conference next month. The conference will promote titanium powder and processing, consolidation processes, alloy development and applications. Associate Professor Brian Gabbitas from the University’s Engineering Department is one of an international range of speakers who will present at the conference. For more information visitwww.tida.co.nz. The conference is being held at the University from December 2-4.
SCHOLARSHIPS AWARDED TO FUTURE LEADERS
The University of Waikato has awarded the 2014 Northland Future Leaders Scholarship to 10 budding leaders from secondary schools in the Northland region.The Northland Future Leaders Scholarship was established by Vice-Chancellor Professor Roy Crawford in 2012 and was awarded for the first time in 2013. Up to 10 $5000 scholarships are awarded annually, and candidates are nominated by the principals of their secondary schools. The scholarship has been designed specifically to recognise the long-standing relationship and strong ties the university has with secondary schools in the Northland region. The scholarship seeks out the leaders of tomorrow from and for Northland, and can be put towards either tuition fees or charges for accommodation in the University’s halls of residence. Selection for the scholarship is assessed on the basis of leadership, community involvement, contribution to cultural and sporting activities and other factors including character, academic ability and commitment to succeed.
COAST TO CAVES – CHANGING ENVIRONMENTS THE FOCUS FOR SCIENCE SUMMER SCHOOL
Investigating Waikato’s coastal and cave environments will be the task for 40 top Year 12 students at the University of Waikato next month. The week-long action-packed Hill Laboratories Waikato Science Summer School will run from December 1-6, and gives the students from around the central North Island a taste of what it can be like to study science and engineering at a tertiary level. The Summer School is an annual event run by Rotary District 9930 and Waikato University’s Faculty of Science & Engineering, with sponsorship from Hill Laboratories. The week will begin with an overnight field trip to explore Kawhia Harbour and the surrounding coastline, the Ruakuri Caves and the Mangapohue Natural Bridge. The remainder of the week will be spent in the Faculty of Science & Engineering laboratories, completing experiments using samples taken during the field trip.
SUMMER SCHOOL ENCOURAGES MAORI AND PASIFIKA STUDENTS INTO BIOLOGY
For the first time, the University of Waikato is playing host to a new event aimed at encouraging Waikato Māori and Pasifika students to study biology at a tertiary level. The Te Huakirangi Māori and Pasifika Biology Summer School is a fun-packed week-long biology experience held on campus at Waikato University from November 30 to December 6. Twenty-three Year 11 students from Hamilton, Te Awamutu and Waitomo are lined up to attend the Summer School. During the event students will look at astronomy and extract DNA in the Faculty of Science & Engineering laboratories. They will have the opportunity to experience aspects of biology in real-world contexts.
TAURANGA CAFÉ TO EXAMINE KEY COMPONENTS OF LIFE AND EVOLUTION
What processes need to take place to enable a single cell to divide and create two daughter cells, and how do some cells lie dormant, yet alive, for long periods? Tauranga’s next Café Scientifique will discuss how evolution and life is linked to the critical interplay between energy and information. The University of Waikato’s Professor Vic Arcus from the Department of Biological Sciences will discuss the myriad, finely tuned processes involved in cells harvesting energy from their environment to live, and storing information in their genes to pass onto the next generation. Supported by the University of Waikato, Café Scientifique is a forum for discussing science issues, where anyone can come to explore the latest ideas in science and technology. The next Café will take place on Monday, November 25, 6.30pm for 7pm start at the Tauranga Yacht and Power Boat Club, 90 Keith Allen Drive, Sulphur Point, Tauranga. Entry is $5 and refreshments are provided. For more information please visit: www.waikato.ac.nz/go/cafescientifique or email firstname.lastname@example.org
WAIKATO FORMULA SAE TEAM TO REVEAL 2013 RACE CAR
Tonight (Monday) the Waikato Formula SAE team from the University of Waikato will hold their official launch event and unveiling of the 2013 race car. A short presentation by the team will be followed by refreshments and a chance to talk to the students one-on-one. The group of six mechanical engineering students worked together to design, build and test the open-wheeled single-seat race car to compete in the Formula SAE Australasia competition this December. The event runs from 7pm Monday, November 18, in the foyer of S Block (ground floor) at the University of Waikato’s Hamilton campus. All media are welcome to attend.
STATISTICS CONFERENCE ON IN HAMILTON
A special joint conference between the New Zealand Statistical Association (NZSA) and the Operations Research Society of New Zealand (ORSNZ) is being held at the University of Waikato later this month. The conference will be attended by statisticians and operations researchers. The plenary speakers are from the University of California, University of Washington, University of Auckland, Massey University, Fonterra and Victoria University. The conference theme is "Analytics for a Changing World: From Data to Decisions". Some of the hot areas in statistics right now are "big data" (ie how to cope with analysing massive data sets from fields such as genotype studies, internet traffic and astronomy), the rapid leaps being made in the field of Bayesian Statistics, and changes to statistical education at the high school level. The conference runs from November 24-27.
NEW WAYS OF LEARNING
Teachers are always looking for new ways to make student learning interesting and effective. A relatively new model for student learning is threshold concepts, and a two-year study testing and researching the theory winds up with a conference at the University of Waikato where the co-developer of threshold concepts Professor Erik Meyer from the University of Queensland will be a guest speaker. The Waikato study was funded by the New Zealand Council for Educational Research through a Teaching Learning and Research Initiative (TLRI) and has involved academics from across the university. Engineering was included because it’s the STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and maths where student retention is of concern and Professor of electronic engineering Jonathan Scott says so far the results are encouraging. The conference runs today and tomorrow (November 18 and 19) and has attracted academics from throughout New Zealand and Australia who work in fields as diverse as physiotherapy, dance, economics, clinical medical practice, English, management, accounting, eLearning, teacher education, and spirituality.
STUDENTS TO BRUSH UP ON THEIR GERMAN
Two Waikato University language students have received scholarships to travel to Germany over our summer to take part in a six-week long course in German language and culture. In January 2013, Erin Becht and Michael Watson will be sacrificing their New Zealand summer for a German winter to be involved in a total immersion language programme thanks to the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) scholarship. The students are assigned to providers in a German city according to their already existing levels of proficiency and will also have the opportunity to explore other German cities and regions as part of their cultural programme and extra-curricular activities. Both students are studying multiple languages with their degrees. Erin is a Bachelor of Arts student studying International Languages with pathways in German, Spanish and French. Michael is studying a Bachelor of Management Studies with International Management and Management Communication majors with a double specialisation in German and Spanish.
LEONARI TRIO COMPETE FOR $50,000
Talented young musicians the Leonari Trio are set to compete at the Pettman/Royal Overseas League Arts International Chamber Music competition this week to try and repeat their win in 2010. The trio, formed in 2009 at Waikato University includes Hilary Hayes, violin, Edward King, cello and Maria Mo, piano. The prestigious event is a national competition where tertiary chamber music groups compete for a $50,000 prize which includes travel to United Kingdom and the opportunity to perform in concerts overseas. This competition will be hosted at the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts at Waikato University for the 7th time from November 22-24.
UNIVERSITY LANDS JOINT NZ-CHINA RESEARCH PROJECT
The University of Waikato has been awarded one of four joint New Zealand-Chinese research projects that will receive $1.4 million in funding over the next three years. The projects are the first to be selected under the Strategic Research Alliance (SRA) Joint Research Programme, which helps facilitate science research collaboration and the commercialisation of science between China and New Zealand. The SRA is jointly funded by the New Zealand Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment and the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology. The Waikato project will study new methods and technologies to enhance land-use practices and restore ecological resilience of significant aquatic ecosystems and will also involve NIWA, the Nanjing Institute of Geography and Limnology and Jinan University.
BRIGHT FUTURE FOR UNIVERSITY MICROBIOLOGY GRADUATE
While studying for a PhD at the University of Waikato, graduate Ron Xavier discovered a passion for communicating complex science to the public. Thanks to the collaborative work he completed during a University of Waikato Doctoral Scholarship in microbiology, Ron is now employed by AgResearch in Palmerston North. His team is currently working towards understanding the risks of global emerging foodborne pathogens with the goal of determining their potential impact on the safety of New Zealand foods. In addition to his day job, Ron is also dedicated to actively promoting the awareness of China as an export opportunity within New Zealand’s science community. Ron has recently been heavily involved with the Sino-New Zealand Youth Exchange Programme.