Funded by the BHP Foundation and delivered by Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO, the Awards recognise the achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, teachers and scientists to inspire more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander student participation in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) studies and careers.
Swan View Primary School in Perth, WA won the School Award for their student-centred focus on the curriculum, which values language, histories and culture across all STEM areas.
Dr Guy Cameron, a proud Wailwan man living in Newcastle, NSW was awarded the STEM Professional Career Achievement Award for his work to improve the experiences of people in clinical care through cutting edge research.
Dr Cameron holds a PhD in Immunology and Microbiology and is enrolled in the Joint Medical Program at the University of Newcastle. He is an established researcher and first author on two papers about the activity of the immune system cells involved in the body’s response to kidney damage.
“By studying medicine as a follow-on from my PhD studies, I am keen to expand my understanding of healthcare from a clinical perspective, in order to share complex health information with the community in an accessible way,” Dr Cameron said.
Milton Lawton was awarded the STEM Champion Award for conducting ‘On Country’ classes for many years, most recently at Woorabinda State School in Central Queensland.
As the son of a Bidjara man and a Ghungalu woman, Mr Lawton has a passion for sharing knowledge with his community. His classes tell the story of natural science and Indigenous culture, and demonstrate the value of education in developing strong young people.
Mr Lawton is also authoring a series of books that address the life cycles of various local animals and their connection to place, with people in the community engaged to ensure local readership and support of this knowledge.
Taylah Griffin won the STEM Professional Early Career Award in recognition of her career at Boeing Australia in Brisbane, QLD, where she is a Flight Test Conductor at Boeing Defence Australia Airpower Teaming System airport, and has been accepted into the Engineering Career Foundation program with Boeing US.
Ms Griffin is a proud Gangulu woman who grew up in Gordonvale in Far North Queensland, and was previously recognised in the 2018 Indigenous STEM Awards with the Tertiary Student Achievement Award as the first Indigenous person to graduate with Honours in Electrical and Aerospace Engineering from QUT.
Dr Kaye Price AM is Chair of the Indigenous STEM Awards judging panel.
“These Awards provide an opportunity to recognise the outstanding achievement of the awardees and to showcase the skills and knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, educators and STEM professionals,” Dr Price said.
“Their passion for enhancing the lives of those around them through the practical application of STEM skills is wonderful to see. Congratulations to all the awardees, and very best wishes as you continue your STEM journey.”
Each of the winners will have a presentation in their local communities in early 2022. For more information visit the Indigenous STEM Awards.
Winners available for interview:
- STEM Champion Award - Milton Lawton, On Country Teacher, Woorabinda State School, Central QLD
- School Award - Margaret Sheedy-Dove, Principal, Swan View Primary School, Perth, WA
- Teacher Award - George Pantazis, STEM Coordinator, Marble Bar Primary School, Pilbara WA
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander STEM Professional Career Achievement Award - Guy Cameron, Scientific Researcher, University of Newcastle, Newcastle, NSW
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander STEM Professional Early Career Award - Taylah Griffin, Aerospace Engineer at Boeing Australia, Brisbane, QLD
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tertiary STEM Achievement Award - Ben Millar, Advanced Computing Student, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Secondary STEM Achievement Award - Cooper Smith, Year 12 Student, Rosedale State School, Agnes Water, QLD
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Secondary STEM Achievement Award - Catie Nugent, Year 12 Student, Grace Lutheran College, Caboolture, QLD
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student Science Award - Jillahkull McInnes, Mareeba State high School, Mareeba, QLD
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Maths Award - Holly Parsons, Our Lady of Sacred Heart Sadadeen, Alice Springs, NT