Alumni Profiles

Amanda Jones Senior Scholars

Home InstitutionSnowdome Foundation Limited
Host InstitutionLeukaemia & Lymphoma Society, University of Pennsylvania
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship (Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation)
DisciplineNon-Profit Leadership
Award Year2020

Amanda is a Director of Snowdome Foundation Limited, a for-purpose organisation focused on supporting translational research and clinical trials to accelerate next generation treatments for blood cancer patients.  Amanda is passionate about ensuring that new therapies such as CAR-T cell therapy and other immunotherapies are accessible to Australian blood cancer patients. 

 As a Fulbright Future Scholar, Amanda will spend time at the Leukaemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) in New York to strengthen the collaboration between Snowdome and LLS.  She will also learn from and leverage the experiences of the LLS in areas such as venture philanthropy, impact investment, fundraising and policy making.  Learnings will inform Snowdome strategies for fundraising.     

Amanda also plans to spend time at the University of Pennsylvania (a world leader in the development of CAR-T cell technology and other cellular therapies) and an affiliated medical centre.  It is hoped that this on the ground learning will assist Snowdome to support the delivery of CAR-T and other cellular therapies to blood cancer patients in Australia.   

Sue VandeWoude Senior Scholars

Home InstitutionColorado State University
Host InstitutionUniversity of Tasmania
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship (Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation)
DisciplineBiology/Virology
Award Year2020

Sue is currently Associate Dean for Research and Professor in the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Colorado State University (CSU).  In addition to promoting and facilitating research of veterinarians and other scientists at CSU, she investigates feline viral ecology and pathogenesis, in order to advance understanding of diseases of domestic and nondomestic cats, and to more generally model pathogenesis and ecology of other viral infections.    

During her Fulbright Scholarship, Sue will study advanced statistical and modeling techniques to identify determinants of virulence during viral co-infections while in the laboratory of Dr. Scott Carver. This immersive experience will allow her to conduct future studies analyzing complex datasets inherent in modern virology research both in Australia and the U.S. She will also work to develop graduate and veterinary exchange programs between her home institution and the University of Tasmania. 

Caroline Smith Professional Scholars

Home InstitutionSkills Australia
Host InstitutionRutgers University
Award NameProfessional Scholarship in Vocational Education and Training (VET)
DisciplineVocational Education and Training
Award Year2012

“Internationally there is an increasing focus on workforce development. This emerging area can benefit workers, employers and communities.”

Dr Caroline Smith is a Director with Skills Australia, which is an independent statutory body providing advice to the Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research. Caroline is the 2012 winner of the Fulbright Professional Scholar in Vocational Education and Training (VET), sponsored by the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIISRTE). Through her Fulbright, Caroline will go to Rutgers University, New Jersey for four months to examine the role of Regional Partnerships for Vocational Education and Training and Workforce Development.

“Improving educational and skills outcomes is a policy priority for many governments around the world. However there is increasing recognition that skills development on its own is insufficient to maximise the benefits of this investment” Caroline said.

Caroline says that to address this policy challenge, in Australia, there is increasing attention on workforce development, and planning for workforce development. Workforce development comprises the acquisition of skills, and how they are used in the workplace as well as efforts to boost participation.

“There is an important strand of work that takes a cluster based approach to improving workforce development, involving government and private sector employers and others such as education providers and not for profit organisations. Over the last decade or so this has been an area of cross-pollination of ideas between the United States and Australia,” Caroline said.

“There are many examples of clusters in Australia and the US, though there is relatively little evaluation. Workforce development planning in Australia would benefit from understanding more about what works in the US.”

Caroline’s project will enable sharing good practice in workforce development, including the role of the VET sector and will also investigate approaches to collecting regional data for workforce development planning.

Caroline has a PhD in employment relations from University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, a Graduate Certificate from the Department of Industrial Relations and BComm (Hons 1) in industrial relations and human resource management from the University of Western Sydney. Caroline’s achievements include the Overseas Student Award, UK (1999-2003) and the John Anderson Scholarship at Strathclyde University, a number of academic publications and representative roles in international agencies: the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the International Labour Organisation and the European Commission. Her interests include film, music and travelling.

Charles R Wolfe, Esq, MRP, JD Professional Scholars

Chuck Wolfe
Home InstitutionSeeing Better Cities Group
Host InstitutionJames Cook University (JCU)
Award NameFulbright Specialist
DisciplineUrban Planning
Award Year2017

Chuck is Principal of Seeing Better Cities Group, a consulting firm, and an American lawyer. He is Affiliate Associate Professor of Urban Design and Planning at the University of Washington in Seattle, and a Visiting Scholar at KTH University, Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm.

He holds professional degrees in urban planning and law, and complements his consulting and law practices with writing on urban issues. His books, Seeing the Better City, (2017), and Urbanism Without Effort (2013), prioritize the visual sense, pluralistic observation methodologies, and tools addressing urban change.

As a Fulbright Specialist, Chuck will be based at JCU in Cairns, and will facilitate community consultation, related action plans, and outcomes. He will engage stakeholders and local government in Cairns and Townsville through one-day events based on the UN New Urban Agenda. These cities present unique landscapes, climates and more remote locations particularly suitable for consultations on positive change and good-quality urban environments.

Dr Louise Byrne Postdoctoral Scholars

Dr Louise Byrne
Home InstitutionRMIT
Host InstitutionYale University, Program for Recovery and Community Health
Award NameFulbright Postdoctoral Scholarship sponsored by RMIT (Vice-Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow)
DisciplineMental Health
Award Year2017

Louise is a Lived Experience Mental Health academic. Her work is informed by her personal experience of significant mental health challenges, service use, and periods of healing.

During her Fulbright Postdoctoral Scholarship, Louise will work in the Yale University Program for Recovery and Community Health.  Louise’s research focuses on the emerging lived experience mental health workforce and will explore factors that assist in the successful inclusion of lived experience roles within the wider workforce. These roles contribute to better outcomes for mental health service users.  However, the lived experience workforce faces many barriers.  Findings will be compared to Louise’s previous studies in Australia and used to inform the development of a toolkit to aid the inclusion of lived experience roles.

Dr Erin Hoare Postdoctoral Scholars

Home InstitutionSchool of Medicine, IMPACT SRC, Food and Mood Centre, Deakin University
Host InstitutionSchool of Public Health, Boston University
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation
DisciplinePublic Health
Award Year2019

Erin is a public health postdoctoral researcher at the Food and Mood Centre, Deakin University. She is interested in lifestyle approaches for the prevention of common mental disorders. She is particularly interested in identifying environmental opportunities for supporting healthful diets and physical activity for child and adolescent mental health. Erin completed her PhD at Deakin University in 2016 with the Global Obesity Centre. Her PhD demonstrated the potential for a systems intervention to support healthier food and activity-related environments in schools to protect against the development of depressive symptoms.

Erin’s Fulbright Scholarship will allow her to conduct novel epidemiological research at Boston University to extrapolate the predictive potential of diet and physical activity across the life span for the prevention of depression and anxiety. With a large proportion of global burden of disease attributable to poor lifestyle and common mental disorders, Erin’s project will make important contributions to the prevention field.

Gayle Maloney Postdoctoral Scholars

Home InstitutionPsychological Wellness Centre
Host InstitutionYale University
Award NameWestern Australia State Postdoctoral Scholarship
DisciplinePsychology (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)
Award Year2015

Gayle is the founder and principal Clinical Psychologist at the Psychological Wellness Centre, a private practice formed in 2006. The practice is comprised of a team of Clinical Psychologists dedicated to providing best practice by matching client’s presenting issues with the most appropriate Clinical Psychologist based on their different areas of special interest, experience and therapeutic approach.

Gayle has worked as a Clinical Psychologist for the past 15 years since graduating with the masters prize in psychology from Curtin University in 2000. Gayle holds a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) with first class honours; a Masters degree in Psychology (Clinical); and a Ph.D. She is a member of the Australian Clinical Psychology Association and the International OCD Foundation.

Gayle has gained extensive clinical experience working with adult clients and multi-disciplinary clinical teams in diverse environments including Western Australia’s largest public and private hospitals. Gayle has training in a range of psychotherapeutic approaches including cognitive-behavioural therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, schema therapy and psychodynamic psychotherapy.

Gayle’s clinical work is predominantly in the area of providing psychological treatment for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), perfectionism and anxiety. Gayle also provides clinical supervision and training in psychological therapy to other mental health professionals.

Through her clinical work Gayle became fascinated by the more complex causes of OCD and elected to undertake further research in this area, while continuing to work in her private practice. Gayle was the recipient of an Australian Postgraduate Award to complete a PhD during 2007-2011 that investigated the salient aetiological factors in the development of unrelenting levels of perfectionism, which is a known factor associated with OCD. In particular she examined how parental bonding and temperament interact to form specific core beliefs that contribute to the development of perfectionism. Gayle has presented her research at national and international conferences.

In addition to practicing evidence-based psychological therapy for OCD, Gayle’s research interests are concurrently focused on the development of adjunct psychological treatment strategies for OCD sufferers whose symptoms do not adequately respond to existing available psychotherapeutic approaches and medications. Gayle believes that the process of achieving successful treatment outcomes often requires drawing on knowledge from multidisciplinary teams, and a variety of therapeutic approaches to develop optimised treatment methodologies.

As a Fulbright scholar, Gayle will collaborate on a research program with one of the leading experts in OCD, A/Professor Christopher Pittenger at the Yale OCD Research clinic, during July-November 2015. The Yale clinic has a 25-year history of groundbreaking advances in the understanding and treatment of OCD. In particular, they will work together on combining an adjunct clinical component with established treatments whilst utilising Yale’s neuroimaging technology, in order to expand the scientific evidence base for new OCD treatments.  Gayle will have the opportunity to learn about aetiology and treatment from a wide breadth of disciplines through observing research trials that seek to advance the field’s understanding and treatment of the disorder. Gayle will also complete advanced-level courses on OCD and related treatments, at training facilities only available in the U.S.

Through pursuing research areas that combine Gayle’s clinical experience with OCD sufferers with the biological and neuroimaging expertise at the Yale OCD Research Clinic, the collaboration seeks to foster mutual enrichment of knowledge between Australia and the U.S. to inform further research, and develop desperately needed new adjunct treatments in the field of OCD.

Based on additional knowledge gained in the U.S., Gayle will provide training to the Clinical Psychologists working at the Psychological Wellness Centre, and make available professional development webinars and workshops for Clinical Psychologists and Psychiatrists in the broader Australian profession involved in the treatment of OCD.

By far the most important area to disseminate the findings of the Fulbright scholarship is to the sufferers of OCD and their families. Hence, Gayle plans to open the ‘Perth OCD and Anxiety Clinic’ in 2016, which will be comprised of a team of experienced Clinical Psychologists with a special interest in the treatment of OCD. The clinic will also provide ongoing advanced professional development opportunities in the field of OCD psychological treatment.

Stephen Aro Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionCarnegie Mellon University
Host InstitutionUniversity of Western Australia
Award Name2011 Fulbright Postgraduate Scholar
DisciplineChemistry
Award Year2011

“At the University of Western Australia, I will be able to expand my horizons and improve as a scientist to complete a project which has the potential to enhance the usefulness of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a diagnostic tool.”

Mr Stephen Aro, a recent science graduate from Carnegie Mellon University, has won a Fulbright Postgraduate Scholarship to spend a year at the University of Western Australia.

Through his Fulbright, Stephen will work with world-leading biomagnetism expert, UWA’s Professor Tim St. Pierre to expand his research in the U.S., with Prof. Sara Majetich at Carnegie Mellon.

In the U.S. Stephen has been working with Professor Majetich on developing magentised nano-particles to be used with optical microscopes as well as in magnetic data storage materials. In WA he aims to develop similar particles that can be used for Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).

“MRI machines work by detecting the molecular-scale magnetic fields of the hydrogen atoms in water molecules throughout our bodies. Larger particles are theoretically better MRI contrast agents because they are easier for the machines to pick up. However, the practical problem that arises in using larger particles is that they can be attracted to each other which could have serious consequences in the human body,” Stephen said.

The particles that Stephen will develop are iron oxide particles with a silica coating.

“The potential advantage of the covered particles I will test lies in the silica coating, which should prevent them from aggregating without weakening them, making them far more effective than current methods at improving MRI signal resolution,” Stephen said.

By creating larger magnetic particles, their uses in biomagnetic application will be drastically increased,” Stephen said.

Stephen has a BS in Chemistry from Carnegie Mellon. He has received various awards and prizes including an interdisciplinary program in nanotechnology (IUPN) fellowship through Carnegie Mellon and the National Science Foundation; and has been on the Mellon College of Science Dean’s List High Honors. In his spare time he tutors elementary school children as a volunteer.

Justin Hartley Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionSupport Kids in Pain
Host InstitutionHarvard University
Award NameQueensland State Postgraduate Scholarship
DisciplinePublic Administration
Award Year2014

“This scholarship will give me the opportunity to expand the service offered throughout Australia.”

Justin Hartley is a Commerce and Economics graduate from the University of Queensland, from which he received a Postgraduate Bachelor of Economics with first class honours. From July 2014, Justin will study a Mid-Career Masters in Public Administration at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

He will focus on public sector leadership and public policy, examining a range of healthcare issues in Australia, with a view to promoting better brain health and memory improvement, particularly in its application to the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease (a very personal area of interest); and improving and expanding the quality of health care in paediatric chronic pain.

“I am a co-founder of Support Kids in Pain (SKIP); which provides free education and support to children living with chronic pain and their families. This scholarship will give me the opportunity to expand the service offered throughout Australia and more broadly, improve outcomes for children living with chronic pain through advocacy, collaboration and education.”

Narelle Keating Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionWalter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI)
Host InstitutionCasanova laboratory, Rockefeller University
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship (Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation)
DisciplineMedical Science
Award Year2020

Narelle is a PhD candidate in the Nicholson laboratory at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI) in Melbourne.  For her Fulbright Future Scholarship, Narelle will work in the laboratory of Professor Jean-Laurent Casanova at Rockefeller University in New York. In the Casanova laboratory, Narelle will have access to clinical samples collected from patients, where she will investigate whether patients with rare genetic mutations in important immune signalling molecules are more susceptible to infectious diseases such as tuberculosis. Narelle’s research will advance our understanding of molecular signalling within immune cells and the fundamental components that not only drive the immune response, but also those that switch it off.  Findings may inform clinical practice, by triggering genetic counselling for patients and their families who are found to carry these rare genetic variants or implementing targeted vaccination strategies to ‘at risk’ individuals. 

Ariel Marcy Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionStanford University
Host InstitutionThe University of Queensland
Award NamePostgraduate Scholarship
DisciplineBiology
Award Year2014

Ariel is an evolutionary ecologist dedicated to communicating science, especially through games. Her research focuses on the evolution of digging mammals – particularly how differences in digging adaptations give certain species an advantage in specific soil types. Her first publication on the North American Western pocket gophers (genus Thomomys) demonstrated that their unusual pattern of species distributions could be explained by differences in soil type and digging adaptations.

During her Fulbright Scholarship, Ariel will be working with Dr. Vera Weisbecker of The University of Queensland in Brisbane. They plan to conduct similar study with Australian short-beaked echidnas (Tachyglossus aculeatus) as Ariel did with pocket gophers. Echidnas and gophers are both digging mammals found across a variety of ecosystems and soil types. Echidnas, unlike gophers, lay eggs instead of giving birth to live young. Their research will lay the groundwork for understanding how two digging mammals with radically divergent development strategies evolve differently to similar selection pressures. This work will contribute to the growing field of Evolutionary Development, which looks at the developmental process to understand what variations are possible for certain animals to evolve. This organism-centric approach complements the more traditional approach to evolution research which focuses on how the environment selects for certain variations.

Since graduating from Stanford in 2011, Ariel has taught in both college and high school settings as well as designed mobile and tabletop science games. In 2011-2012 academic year, Ariel taught Human Biology at Stanford as a Course Associate. Observing how difficult it was for students to imagine the dynamic cell environment, Ariel and a team of Stanford faculty applied for a grant to create an educational game. The resulting mobile and web game, Cancer Avenger is now used as part of the introductory biology classes to help students get hands-on experience with stem cells, cell signaling, and cancer.

In 2013, she founded an education company, STEAM Galaxy Studios. STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math. The company makes games, books, and toys that emphasize the creativity inherent in STEM as well as encourage a wider diversity of youth to pursue STEAM fields. Ariel’s first card game for STEAM Galaxy, Go Extinct!, was successfully funded through a Kickstarter campaign in May 2014. Go Extinct! teaches people years and older how land animals are related, how to read evolutionary trees, and the evidence scientists use to create the trees.

When Ariel is not looking at mammal bones or making games, she enjoys road biking, reading science fiction, and playing fiddle in a bluegrass band called Nimbleweed.

North American pocket gophers and Australian echidnas provide a unique evolutionary study system: both are digging mammals but have radically different developmental strategies. During her Fulbright scholarship, Ariel plans to complete morphometric (i.e. functional shape) analyses of forelimbs for both gophers and echidnas and also conduct a geographical study of echidnas comparing shape differences to soil types similar to her work with gophers. These two studies would provide a unique comparison of digging monotremes and placentals, as well as lay the groundwork for investigations on how their different developmental strategies impact adaptation to a variety of soil types. As part of the civic engagement component, Ariel will create an educational card game featuring Australian fauna that engages middle and high school students in ideas about evolutionary development. Ariel hopes to publish her research with Dr. Vera Weisbecker of the University of Queensland and will make the card game freely available online to download and print.

Caroline S. Park Postgraduate Students

Caroline Park
Home InstitutionHarvard University
Host InstitutionDoherty Institute and the Australian-German Climate and Energy College, University of Melbourne
Award NameFulbright Anne Wexler Scholarship in Public Policy
DisciplinePublic Health
Award Year2017

A native of Whippany, New Jersey, Caroline received her undergraduate education at Harvard University in Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology, with a secondary field in Economics. During her undergraduate years, Caroline studied metabolic syndrome at the Cowan Laboratory of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute. As a Herchel Smith Fellow in 2016, she researched the effects of maternal malnutrition on fetal development. An avid traveler, Caroline has also worked on various humanitarian projects throughout Southeast Asia and southern Africa.

For her Fulbright Anne Wexler Scholarship, Caroline will pursue a Master of Philosophy in Medicine at the University of Melbourne. She will conduct research at the intersection of climate change and public health, specifically focusing on how vulnerable populations respond to climate-influenced food insecurity.

 

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