Budding research students aid senior medical researchers
15 February 2005
This summer, top university science students from universities in Australia and New Zealand sacrificed a suntan and time at the beach to undertake summer vacation research scholarships through the Faculty of Medicine.
Awardees were given the opportunity to participate in an ongoing research project under the supervision of senior Faculty of Medicine, University of Sydney researchers at one of 7 schools and affiliated medical research institutes. Students participated in their given research project over a period of 8 weeks.
"This is the perfect environment for bright young minds interested in medical research. The Faculty of Medicine at the University of Sydney has an exceptional record in attracting research grants; we regularly attract the highest percentage of NH&MRC project grants of any university in Australia," commented Andrew Coats, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine. "In addition, we have over 40 affiliated centres of research excellence covering most areas of health and medical knowledge creation. The Summer Vacation Research Scholarship program aims to connect bright student minds with our distinguished researchers."
The scholarships aim to offer a challenging environment in which students can evaulate themselves, and demonstrate to others their potential for research. Scholarships were awarded to 28 undergraduate students from the University of Sydney, University of NSW, Newcastle University and the University of Otago in NZ.
Students undertook research projects on a wide range of issues including paediatric burns injuries, arthritis, vaccines, neuropathy, gene sequencing, antioxidants and stroke. The program was enthusiastically supported by the ANZAC Research Institute, Centenary Institute of Cancer Medicine and Cell Biology, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, the George Institute of International Health, Sutton Research Laborotories, Institute of Biomedical Research, Children's Hospital Westmead and the Central, Western and Northern Clinical Schools, who all welcomed students into their laboratories.
Simon Myers, Senior Research Scientist and Co-ordinator of the Summer Vacation Research Scholarship program at the ANZAC Research Institute commented, "Having such talented students here has been such a bonus to our work, they have assisted with pilot studies, helped us to collaborate across research projects and have really added to the atmosphere, the labs are full of activity!"
And the students have gained too. Phillip Romo, a Bachelor of Science student at the University of Sydney said, "I now know I want to do an honours year, and this (Summer Scholarship) experience has meant that I will be able to hit the ground running without wasting any time learning the techniques - it has been a very valuable 8 weeks."
"This was the second year we have run this program at the ANZAC and the first year of the Faculty's scheme", said Faculty of Medicine's Summer Scholarship convenor, Professor David Handelsman, "and preliminary feedback from researchers and students alike indicate great benefits, not only to the students but to the the various research teams. Next year we hope to extend the program and offer projects in additional areas."
Visit the Scholarships & awards section of the site for details on the Summer Vacation Research Scholarship program.
For information about the program for the 2005/6 Summer Vacation please contact:
Research Support Officer
Faculty of Medicine
University of Sydney