“Welcome to Curtin Commons, an online storytelling space for Curtin alumni, staff, students and friends. Featuring a series of thought-provoking articles intended to inspire and enlighten, Commons celebrates the many amazing contributions of our Curtin community and how they are striving to create a brighter future for us all.”
– Carmelle Wilkinson, Editor-in-Chief
Mentoring program helps guide future Nightingales
19 May. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read.
While nursing as a profession has evolved over the years, the career itself remains true to those who are motivated to serve and save others. Hear how Curtin’s new Nursing and Midwifery Mentoring Program is helping our final year students make a smooth transition from study to the frontline.
Thick skin and resilience key to illustrious media career
13 May. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read
Nine News presenter Tracy Vo has become a familiar and friendly face on our television screens. Welcomed into our homes on weekends at 6pm, the bubbly journalist brings us the latest headlines from around our state, nation and world.
Forging a successful career as one of Australia’s leading journalists, the Curtin graduate is proud of her Vietnamese heritage and attributes her parent’s bravery and resilience as refugees for paving her bright and promising future.
Sunrise swims give rise to body positivity
4 May. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read.
When Curtin graduate Tara Jeisman shared a video of herself on Tik Tok enjoying a sunrise swim at Mullaloo Beach in February this year, she had no idea it would evolve into a body positive movement that would later sweep the nation.
With more than 125 girls now joining her for the weekly morning swims, the founder of Sea Gals has created a safe space, where inhibitions, insecurities and worries are being washed away.
Empowering Aboriginal women on their educational journey of discovery
28 April. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 15 min read.
A survivor of the Stolen Generations, Curtin’s Moorditj Yorga Scholarship Coordinator Trish Hill-Wall shares her journey from heartache to healing. Despite her past, she has triumphed over cultural adversity to become a pillar of strength for mature-aged Aboriginal women undertaking their tertiary studies. With a love for education and a determination to leave a positive legacy, Trish is an inspiration to all who meet her.
Curtin research to develop evidence-based strategies for expanding access to youth mental health care in WA
5 April. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read.
Help While Our Children Wait, is an evidence-based intervention project led by Curtin Professor Bronwyn Myers, which provides vital mental health support for young people falling into a growing gap – where their problems are too severe for early interventions but not severe enough for specialist services.
Is the end of the pandemic in sight?
8 April. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read.
As COVID-19 continues to sweep the globe claiming more than six million lives to date, by comparison WA has managed to weather the pandemic storm – due to our health team’s precautionary and highly effective measures and WA’s enviable geographical location. WA’s Chief Health Officer Andrew Robertson shares his thoughts on whether the end is in sight.
Pang dishes up second cookbook, and new recipes with a bang
30 March. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read.
With a second cookbook in the work and more pop-up cooking classes on the way, Curtin graduate and Masterchef Australia fan favourite Brendan Pang reflects on his journey from social worker in the State’s north to dumpling extraordinaire.
Pilot study provides glimmer of hope to those with Parkinson’s
22 March. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read.
Imagine not wanting to leave your home because you can’t stop drooling? Donald Main is one 74% of people living with Parkinson’s who experience this common and vexing symptom. A recent pilot study led by Dr Naomi Cocks explored the benefits of muscle strength training to help stop the embarrassing side effects of drooling.
Un-BOL-ievable both on and off the track
22 March. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 10 min read.
Australian Olympian and former Curtin student Peter Bol is a homegrown success story both on and off the track. The Sudanese middle-distance runner from Perth is an inspiring young man who taking fame in his stride and motivating others to believe in their worth and natural talent.
Indigenous voices key to the future of mining in WA
4 March. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 15 min read
New heritage laws passed in WA last year aim to protect and preserve the culture of the oldest known civilisations in the world – but has enough been done to include Indigenous voices in the decision-making process?
Curtin Commons explores the future of mining in Australia from an Indigenous perspective, with a focus on culture, law and environmental knowledge.
Horse racing enthusiast on track to remove disability barriers and prove one size doesn’t fit all
22 Feburary. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 15 min read.
Commerce graduate and disabled blogger Amy Evans is shattering misconceptions about life with a disability one frock at a time. Following her win at last year’s WA Fashions on the Field in York, the entrepreneur and founder of Little Black Dress Digital is using her growing social media presence to breakdown the stigma of those with a disability.
Community pantry and Dinner Twist serve up food supplies to students facing financial difficulty
15 February. By Carmelle Wilkinson. 5 min read.
Curtin Community Pantry has helped hundreds of students since its start-up in 2020.
Launched in response to the impact of Covid-19, the initiative is aimed at supporting students experiencing financial stress, by providing low barrier access to basic food supplies and other essential items. Now in its second year, the initiative continues to dish up great services for students in need.
Albany-raised artist Erin Coates (BA Arts Hons, 2002) stunning ceiling-to-floor waterfall installation ‘Never the Same River Twice’ is inspired by her free-diving in the Swan River, and the impact of colonisation on the river, known as Derbarl Yerrigan in Whadjuk Noongar language. The work is now on display as part of the 23rd Biennale of Sydney. Photo credit: Joshua Morris Photography, Erin Coates.
Juicy reads from our past…
Missed out on some of our previous articles? Never fear – we have them all here.Visual literacy opens a world of opportunities to young author Abilities Collective @ Curtin: A conversation with astronomer and Associate Lecturer Dr Tim Galvin New generation of medical graduates set out to address health disadvantage and disparity in WA Economics student Alex Jayasuria raises his voice at COP26 From occupational therapy to mining CEO: Rio Tinto’s Kellie Parker on restoring trust and a new way forward Abilities Collective @ Curtin: A conversation with Erica Schurmann ‘You could hear the rumblings’: Adam built a business around decarbonisation Entrepreneurs are the original disruptors Space, cubed: the Curtin graduates behind Binar-1 The transformative power of moorditj yorgas
Graphic design graduate and talented artist Mel Tregonning’s award-winning novel ‘Small Things’ is sparking important conversations about mental health.
Ben Young is a Perth-born local, a film student who started out making music videos for his mates, and now a rising director with an overnight success story.
We spoke to Curtin grads living all over the world about experiencing the pandemic where they are, the challenges they’ve faced and how they overcame them.
The student newspaper known as ‘Grok’ has been passed around by Curtin Student Guild members, shared among protestors, and has a long, rich history in WA.
One in four young people experience a mental illness each year in Australia. Here is the research that Curtin University is implementing to fight rising mental illness.
Humanitarian filmmaker and photographer Marcus Wong believes you can’t care about something you haven’t seen. He’s made it his mission to share the voices of the voiceless with the world.
Hot topics we’re enjoying right now:
How will our resource use and mining operations change as we move towards a sustainable, decarbonised future? Curtin Professor Michael Hitch discusses.
New nano capsules could spell an alternate effective treatment for type-2 diabetes. Hear from the Curtin researchers behind the capsules, Dr Hani Al-Salami and Dr Ryu Takeshi.
Best Director nominee for the AACTA Awards 2021 and Curtin film graduate, Roderick Mackay, shares his journey on making his stunning debut film, ‘The Furnace’.
Ballardong Noongar lawyer Emma Garlett will attend Oxford University, the second oldest university in the world, to integrate Aboriginal law into the current Western legal framework.
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… and find out what your community cares about
Valerie Ah Chee (BSci Midwifery, 2011) cares about fostering a sense of belonging for Aboriginal women
“My biggest inspiration and role model is my mum, Dr Rosemary van den Berg, who was the first Nyungar woman to graduate with a PhD from Curtin. I worked on a painting to represent that intergenerational support, and hopefully empower other Aboriginal women to thrive at Curtin through their Moorditj Yorga Scholarship Program.”
David Gribble (BApp Sci 2001, MBA 2006) cares about delivering impactful community safety programs for families in WA
“I have felt empowered to create change as part of some wonderful organisations that benefit many inspiring people – currently this is for the Constable Care Foundation in my role as CEO. Ethical decision-making, integrity and creating change for the better are my guiding personal values.”
Molly Ryan (BA Fashion, 2020) cares about creating sustainable fashion
“The mindless consumption of apparel is a major contributor to the fashion industry’s shameful environmental impacts. I want to promote responsible consumption of fashion products through education, awareness and innovation. We have the power to catalyse change by consuming less.”
Letter to the Editor from Ken Gibbons (BApp Sci Biology, 1977)
“I read with interest the latest issue of Curtin Commons and especially the history of Grok and Curtin FM. I was the Student Guild President from 1977-1979 in a rather turbulent period in the Guild’s history. Grok played an instrumental role in the survival of Curtin FM and also in the WA School of Mines (WASM) in Kalgoorlie; the University Administration was going to defund CurtinFM (formerly known as 6NR) and close the station. There were also recommendations that WASM should be closed and the courses transferred to the Bentley campus in Perth. Grok was involved in sharing the strong opinions of students who were against these proposals and was a vanguard for social issues on campus. I hope that the rich history of Grok has been preserved, as it is perhaps the best record and testament of the living history of students, their Guild and their stories of the past half century.”
Dikshita Awotarowa (BCom Banking and Finance, 2020) cares about inspiring women to see themselves in finance
“I founded the Women in Finance and Investment Network to address the underrepresentation of women in these fields and evolve the public’s perception of what a female expert in finance looks like. Hopefully by increasing our visibility, we can motivate the next generation of young girls to study finance.”
Acknowledgement of Country
Curtin University acknowledges the traditional owners of the land on which Curtin Perth is located, the Whadjuk people of the Nyungar Nation; and on our Kalgoorlie campus, the Wongutha people of the North-Eastern Goldfields.