Western Sydney University Unsung Heroes Award
Western Sydney University has been a central part of Greater Western Sydney’s community since its inception, playing an active role in the development, well being and prosperity of the community. the Western Sydney Unsung Heroes Award was conceived to ensure that Western Sydney University students who contribute to the community can be recognised.
Below are our nominees for the 2017 ZEST Award for the Western Sydney University Unsung Heroes Award:
Bou Ovington – Winner
Bou has taken a holistic view about the university experience having regularly offered to lead activities and share ideas during class time, as well as taking the time to take part in extra activities beyond the classroom. Bou has mentored students via the Pathways to Dreaming program since commencing university. He has worked with local high school students in their schoolwork and pathway into university. As a participant of a research project which engaged Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to share their experiences about sport coaching careers, Bou became a panel member at a public community forum held at Western Sydney University Parramatta Campus in May 2016. This research has led to organisational and structural changes within overarching sporting bodies in their approach to educational and employment pathways into coaching and other sport related careers.
For the last three years graduate student Anne Dwyer has built relationships with YWCA NSW and Campbelltown organisations, connected with 50 families with 9-month-old infants and followed their development longitudinally using newer research technology permitting ‘big data’. Anne has visited each family every 3 months, and built interest and involvement resulting in a zero attrition rate in her study – almost unheard of in longitudinal research. Anne’s research offers hope that some aspects of slow language development can be addressed behaviorally at minimal cost, in the home and/or in early childhood settings, e.g. through parent education programs, and provides normative data for organisations working with children with recognised issues e.g. hearing impairment.
Claire is very much an unsung hero. She recently raised over $28,000 for the Hamlin Fistula Foundation by walking 660kms from the Central Coast to Victoria. She also recently participated in the Choosing Hope Walk of Remembrance to raise money for a cuddle cot – a cooling system which allows grieving families to spend time with their babies. Claire is a wonderful ambassador for Western Sydney University as her fund-raising web-page explains how her passion to help has developed through her studies. Claire is an inspirational young woman whose passion to help others is contagious and influences both staff and students at WSU and in the wider Western Sydney community.
On 25th August 2016, Matt was returning to Kingswood campus from Parramatta campus. While driving, he observed a house fire in progress, and pulled over to render assistance. Using his rural fire services training, gained access to the house by breaking a front window, and then successfully extracted a female occupant from the house, sustaining minor cuts and abrasions in the process. Following medical treatment, Matt returned to Kingswood campus to work his scheduled SCEM Computer Laboratory Assistant shift.
Narendar is strongly committed on addressing poor health literacy in culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities. The key elements of his innovative endeavours include providing health information through telephone calls, text messages, and home visits. Culturally appropriate health information is delivered to migrant families via regular phone calls and text messages. His persistent deliberations over the last 2 years have resulted in improving health literacy of CALD families in Greater Western Sydney. These initiatives improved social standing of these families by enhancing their general health and dental health awareness thereby empowering them to undertake better health decisions.
Rhys is an executive member for the longest serving non-profit Public Speaking Club in the Campbelltown/Macarthur Region. He has given his time to the community through teaching leadership and public speaking to youth through youth leadership programs in schools and organisations such as Council for Pacific Islanders. He also gives his time to judge youth at public speaking and leadership at local and state level for organisations such as Rotary, Macarthur Independent Schools Association, and public schools with their South West Sydney Public Speaking Competitions.
The information on this website was supplied by the Award Nominators.
The ZEST team takes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information provided.
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