Dean's Report

Return to campus

Well, what a year - full of great challenges, unexpected trajectories and, despite it all, many successes. It is an extraordinary experience we have all shared and, although it is not yet over, we finish 2020 with hope for a more ‘normal’ 2021. This week I returned to my office in Leicester Street, along with Keryn Negri, Phil Tudor and Paula McAllister, and it reminded me of how great it is to work with colleagues in person. The University has now moved from ‘restricted’ status to ‘open’ which, as you would understand, requires a great deal of work as the University divisions update their COVID Safe Return to Campus plans and deal with the phased approach of some staff and students returning to campus. Our intranet site will be continually updated as information comes to hand.

Academic Women in Leadership

The Academic Women in Leadership program for 2021 has been launched with applications due by 18 January 2021. This program, aimed at Level C and D female academics, is one of several University strategies addressing women’s under-representation in higher level academic appointments and in key policy decision making governance bodies. The program is particularly relevant for academics who are interested in future leadership roles in their faculties or schools or in the wider University. I strongly encourage those who are eligible to consider applying.

Inaugural David Clarke memorial lecture

Last Thursday afternoon we held the inaugural David Clarke memorial lecture and unveiled the new name and plaque for Room 421 in the Kwong Lee Dow building, which will now be known as the David Clarke Research Classroom. This first lecture was given by Professor Alan Schoenfeld, the Elizabeth and Edward Conner Professor of Education and Affiliated Professor of Mathematics from the University of California at Berkeley. Professor Schoenfeld is an expert in issues of mathematical thinking, teaching, and learning. Despite being a virtual event this year it was a fitting tribute to our greatly missed and esteemed colleague, Professor David Clarke.

2020 ACEL Nganakarrawa Award

My warmest congratulations to Professor Yong Zhao who is the recipient of the prestigious 2020 ACEL Nganakarrawa Award. This award is given for general excellence in educational administration and to a person whose learning, experience and contribution to ACEL have earned lasting respect and gratitude. The term Nganakarrawa, from the Ndjebbana language of central Arnhem Land, refers to “those who move about, all seeing, all knowing, knowledgeable and well regarded”. Quite an honour indeed.

Lastly, as we come to the end of this most unexpected of years, I would like to thank you all for your hard work, your dedication to our students and for your collegiality. I have valued and appreciated all the support that so many of you have given to MGSE this year. I hope you all take the time over the summer break to relax, to spend time with your family and friends and I look forward to seeing you in 2021.

Jim