In 2018, The University of Western Australia has continued to deliver a quality, enriching education experience to prepare our students for varied and diverse careers in a changing world.
This year, we took part in the Universities Australia Work Integrated Learning (WIL) Audit and demonstrated that 67 per cent of our majors include a WIL component. In June, the UWA WIL Summit drew stakeholders from across the University, leading to the formation of the WIL Strategy Group that will work to embed WIL in all UWA majors. In addition, the Education Enhancement Unit facilitated more than 350 WIL placements, and will more than double the number of placements in 2019 through an agreement with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Western Australia. The McCusker Centre for Citizenship also facilitated 600 internships with not-for-profit, community and government organisations around Australia and internationally.
We launched the UWA Careers and Employability Award, recognising the development of career skills through practical, real-world experiences. Successful completion of the award will see students receive a co-curricular transcript at graduation. Career Mentor Link celebrated its 15th anniversary, and this year matched 353 students to industry mentors located throughout Australia and across the globe.
This year, UWA held its first round of international Open Days in China, Singapore and Indonesia. Our Nanjing Open Day was live-streamed to an audience of 37,000 prospective students and their families. In Perth, our Open Day attracted more than 18,700 attendees, an increase of more than 20 per cent from 2017. The launch of our new Faculty and School webpages provides a more contemporary and streamlined experience for students learning about course offerings. UWA had a successful year in the media with 4,691 items generated in Australian media alone, featuring the many achievements of our staff and students.
The University secured more than $750,000 from the Alcoa Foundation to support Aspire UWA across the Peel region over the next three years. Fairway UWA was a finalist for the Australian Financial Review Higher Education Award in Equity and Opportunity. The Fit for Study program, which recognises the importance of physical, psychological, emotional and social wellbeing to successful study, was nominated for the Australian Awards for University Teaching (AAUT).
New student accommodation opened in Albany and enabled the first cohort of Perth-based Study InBroad students to undertake a full semester of study at the Albany campus. Our first regional Summer School in Albany attracted 176 enrolments in January and February.
University Hall was home to 761 students from 54 countries in 2018, including 52 exchange students from 41 international universities. Forrest Hall opened its doors and welcomed 18 Forrest Scholars as tenants, and provided more than 1,600 nights of short-stay accommodation to visitors throughout the year.
We had a successful year in competitive sport. UWA was crowned National Men’s Beach Volleyball Champions, and was the leading Western Australian university across all Unisport Australia programs. UWA Football Club won its first women’s grade premiership.
Three undergraduate UWA students were awarded New Colombo Plan Scholarships. One of these students was the first Indigenous Fellow to also be named a Fellow of the country they are studying in. Four UWA students were awarded Westpac Scholars Asian Exchange Scholarships, and participated in exchanges in Singapore and Hong Kong. A UWA student was awarded a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship, and another awarded a national Fulbright Scholarship. We also had three UWA graduates receive Fulbright Scholarships.
The outstanding achievements of our teaching and support staff were celebrated at the UWA Excellence in Teaching Awards, with 18 awards presented to individuals and teams.
Ten of our award recipients were also nominated for the 2018 Australian Awards for University Teaching. The inaugural two-day Teaching Excellence Conference and Showcase saw more than 220 UWA staff and guests participate in two days of professional development, networking and celebration.
UWA’s commitment to high-quality, world-class learning and teaching is being advanced through pursuing institutional accreditation of UWA educators within the UK Higher Education Academy (HEA). Several senior staff have prepared and submitted applications for Principal or Senior Fellowships under the new HEA UWA Fellowship Accreditation Scheme.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank staff across the Education portfolio for their hard work in 2018. I look forward to working with you all in 2019 as we continue to build on UWA’s strengths in learning, teaching and student experience.
Professor David Sadler