Issue 05 - 23 February 1999

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About Monash

What's on






Sports shorts

Staff development




$1.6 million in grants
opens up new research

Research into green chemistry, biological invasions, drug absorption and humanoid robotics are just some of the new projects that have won start-up funding under the Strategic Monash University Research Fund - Grants for New and Emerging Research Strengths (SMURF 1).

A total of $1,640,000 has been allocated for 1999, with 14 projects being supported by sums ranging from $70,000 to $150,000. Nine of the projects are new, while five are renewals of 1998 projects.

The SMURF 1 grant allocations are determined by the Vice-Chancellor's Group based on ranking proposals submitted by the Committee of Associate Deans (Research).

A group of researchers from the Department of Chemistry will receive $150,000 to establish a new Centre in Green Chemistry. The centre, which will also involve staff from the Department of Materials Engineering, was the top-ranked proposal among those submitted by faculties for funding under SMURF 1.

The team, led by Professor Colin Raston, will focus on the design, manufacture and use of chemical processes with little or no pollution potential.

The Faculty of Science also received $70,000 in funding for a new Centre for Analysis and Management of Biological Invasions. Its director, Dr Denis O'Dowd, said the centre would study the impact of the spread of different species of plants and animals around the globe.

Other new projects funded for 1999 include:

Grants from SMURF2, totalling about $1.3 million, will be awarded later this year on the basis of research performance.

photo: new council members

Professor Colin Raston, above, will head Monash's new Centre in Green Chemistry.

Indigenous awardphoto: year 10 students

Monash University's first indigenous research scholarship has been awarded to a graduate with a strong interest in women's studies.

Ms Kyllie Cripps, an Aboriginal education field officer with the Department of Education, Training and Youth Affairs in Melbourne, will undertake doctoral research on strategies to combat domestic and sexual violence in indigenous communities.

Ms Cripps graduated from the University of South Australia with a degree in Aboriginal affairs administration and gained first class honours in Aboriginal studies by distance education.

She said she was delighted by the scholarship, which would allow her to continue her research in the area of sexual violence.

Ms Cripps plans to visit Native American communities in Arizona as part of her research project.

New look for Arts faculty

The Faculty of Arts has reinvented itself with an entirely new academic and administrative profile.

The restructure follows the recommendations of last year's review of the faculty.

Arts dean Professor Marian Quartly said the new structure would streamline procedures and enhance cooperation across the disciplines in undergraduate teaching and in postgraduate supervision and research.

The associate deans for Arts are:

The departments of the Faculty of Arts have been replaced by a new structure of 10 schools, each led by a head of school:

photo: cricket playersJacques Brel is alive

Belgian-born folk icon Jacques Brel will be brought back to life at a cabaret next month at Monash's Clayton campus.

Jacques Brel is alive and well and living in Paris, produced by the Centre for Drama and Theatre Studies, celebrates the works of a writer/composer known for his burning imagery and brilliantly controlled rhythmic patterns.

The cabaret was first produced off-Broadway in the late 1960s and notched up about 1500 performances in its premiere season.

The Monash cast of eight students and recent graduates play up to 30 different characters in the production, which has been set up as a genuine cabaret.

Jacques Brel will be staged in the Drama Theatre at the Performing Arts Centre, starting at 8 pm, from 4 to 6 March and from 9 to 13 March.

For tickets, contact the Monash Box Office on extn 51111.

U-Know' was the theme of a university information seminar for new Monash student representatives last week, organised by MUFSO. Sharing lunch with the deputy vice-chancellor (International) Professor John Maloney were, from left, Vicky Tsaimos, Monika Papdan and Emma Jessop from Berwick.

Photo by Greg Ford.


An O-pen welcome to new students

Thousands of students are having their first real taste of university life as Orientation activities get under way this week on all Monash campuses.

The annual welcoming event gives newcomers the chance to meet staff and other students involved with their courses and to find out about the support and assistance available to new students.

Orientation also provides new students with
a once-a-year opportunity to sample the many clubs and societies operating at Monash campuses.

For full details of Orientation activities, pick up a copy of the What's On: 99 Orientation Guide or check the Monash website at for the link to Virtual Orientation.

Kidney kids go to camp

Damien Polioudakis, above, was determined to help sick kids have a summer holiday this year.

The third-year Monash medicine student volunteered as a carer at the fifth National Kidney Kids camp in January, organised by the Australian Kidney Foundation.

The camps aim to provide fun and peer support for children who have had kidney transplants; are awaiting transplants; or are on dialysis.

This year, the children, aged between 8 and 18, spent a week camping on Milson Island in New South Wales.

According to Damien, the camps provide many of the children with their only opportunity to have a break.

"With dialysis, medication and special diets, it is hard for these kids to participate in school camps," he said. "For many of them, it's their only chance at a holiday without interrupting their medical care."

The campers took part in bush walks, canoeing, tennis, archery and swimming, supervised by volunteer medicine students and with full nursing support.

Monash Briefs

Laying down the law

The Faculty of Law will hold a workshop on 26 February for secondary legal studies teachers and competition coordinators involved in the 1999 Monash Legal Challenge.

The advocacy workshop will be conducted by barrister Mr Damian Ellwood, judge of last year's competition and an adjudicator this year.

The aim of the session is to provide a 'plain English' explanation and practical demonstration of the Rules of Evidence, techniques of witness examination and court etiquette, and ways of applying these in legal studies classes and internal school competitions.

The Monash Legal Challenge witness examination competition began last year as a pilot program for year 10, 11 and 12 students and will expand this year to involve 50 schools.

For more information, call Ms Pam Lister on extn 53373 or check the website at

New coordinator appointed

Ms Judy Watts has been appointed coordinator of the Monash civil ceremonies graduate diploma program.

A practising civil celebrant, Ms Watt also has long experience in teaching and educational administration.

The graduate diploma program, the first of its kind in an Australian university, was established at Monash last year to provide professional training for the growing number of celebrants conducting a wide range of civil ceremonies.

In Victoria, registration of civil celebrants is controlled by the Attorney-General.

AMIS joins ITS

The computer support team AMIS has become a department of the Information Technology Services Division (ITS).

The AMIS team will now be known as Information Systems.

For more information, contact the associate director of ITS Information Systems, Mr Max Robinson, on extn 53020.


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