Swinburne awarded best in class for equity and access
Swinburne University’s director of student engagement Dr Nadine Zacharias is proud of the support her team is offering to care leavers
- The Swinburne Care Leavers Assistance and Support Program (CLASP) has won a AFR Higher Education Award for equity and access
- CLASP supports care leavers to study and thrive in a university degree
- Tech startup, mDetect, was a finalist in the awards for best research commercialisation
People who have experienced out-of-home care, such as foster care, face significant barriers to accessing university. Swinburne University of Technology wanted to help these students get into their dream course, then thrive in and complete their degree.
Together with Raising Expectations, the Swinburne Care Leavers Assistance and Support Program (CLASP) was created to engage care leavers from enrolment through to graduation and beyond. The program has taken out the prize for equity and access in the Australian Financial Review (AFR) Higher Education Awards 2022.
A support net for students
Swinburne director of student engagement Dr Nadine Zacharias explains that the post-high school, university years can be a fragile time in the lives of care leavers.
“You see examples where students lose their homes, and before you know it, they’ve lost their university placement during that extremely critical time when they would normally be transitioning to university,” she says.
Through regular communication and support from the start, staff can get ahead of any problems and knock down barriers to education, participation and achievement.
The program has grown from 61 to 354 students in three years – achieving an 86.4 per cent completion rate for students who joined in 2020, which is well above the national average.
A spin-out success
Tech startup, mDetect, was a finalist and strong competitor in the research commercialisation category of the AFR Higher Education Awards 2022.
It is no secret Swinburne is fertile ground for startups and spinoffs. A spin-out from Swinburne research into dark matter, mDetect is bringing to market its cutting-edge muon sensor technology. Simply put, muon technology can look through hundreds of metres of rock to create images or underground regions and detect abnormalities which provide the early warning signs needed to prevent potential structural failures in dams, mine sites, bridges and tunnels.
The mDetect team (left to right) Dr Jerome Donovan, Craig Webster, Professor Alan Duffy, Dr Eryadi Masli and Dr Shanti Krishnan
With a management team well-versed in the Australian research and start-up eco-system, mDetect has tapped into a range of government funding to help pave the way for commercialising this technology. Most significantly, the company secured significant commercialisation funding from the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre, supporting the scaling of device production and opening an opportunity for advanced manufacturing to continue to grow in Australia.
Swinburne supports first National Quantum Strategy
As a leader in quantum technology, Swinburne has welcomed the Federal Government’s first National Quantum Strategy.Thursday 04 May 2023
Swinburne reaffirms support for Voice to Parliament
National Reconciliation Week 2023 is particularly unique. It falls during a historic year, in which Australians are being asked to vote in a referendum to recognise First Peoples.Tuesday 30 May 2023
Driving systemic change: Swinburne appoints new Director of National Centre for Reconciliation Practice
Leader in reconciliation, inclusion and gender equity, Adam Mooney, has been appointed Director of the National Centre for Reconciliation Practice at Swinburne.Read more (Driving systemic change: Swinburne appoints new Director of National Centre for Reconciliation Practice)Monday 29 May 2023
Swinburne appoints Defence head to tackle crucial and complex landscape
Swinburne University of Technology has appointed Distinguished Professor Saeid Nahavandi as its inaugural Associate Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Chief of Defence Innovation.Wednesday 03 May 2023
- Student News
New Latelab on the way in Swinburne’s next gen_campus redevelopment
A new 24/7 Latelab and student hub is on its way as part of the transformative next gen_campus revitalisationWednesday 31 May 2023