Terry Speed: fighting cancer by the numbers

PM's Prize

30 October 2013 2013 Prime Minister’s Prize for Science Terry Speed doesn’t expect to see headlines reading Statistician cures cancer any time soon. But he knows that the right mathematics and statistics can help researchers understand the underlying causes of cancer and reduce the need for surgery. A mathematician and statistician, he has written elegant theoretical papers that almost no-one reads.  he has also testified in court, helped farmers and diamond miners, and given biologists statistical tools to help them cope with the genetic revolution. Twenty years ago biologists looked at one or two genes in isolation.  Today they can track thousands of genes in a single cell, but to … [Read more...]

It’s Gina


29 October 2013 After 101 years of operation NMIT (Northern Metropolitan Institute of TAFE) is celebrating its one millionth enrolment: Gina Fasanella who has enrolled in NMIT’s Diploma of Business at the Preston campus. After completing the short course “How to Start a Successful Business” at NMIT, Gina decided to enrol at NMIT full-time. “I had already experienced NMIT through my short course and I was really happy with it, plus it was a lot cheaper than my other options,” said Gina. “NMIT is close to my house as well, so it was a really easy decision.”  As NMIT’s one millionth enrolment, Gina will graduate from an Institute with a rich history of technical education. … [Read more...]

NCVER News #315

NCVER      |     31 October 2013 Skilled migrant women in regional Australia: promoting social inclusion through vocational education and training Sue Webb, Denise Beale, Miriam Faine   This report examines the under-utilisation of the skills of migrants in regional areas, particularly skilled women who are often the spouse of a primary applicant. It considers the interplay of the regional labour market, support services for migrants and the role of education and training providers in supporting the participation of migrants in the labour force and other social activities. This is one of three projects by Monash University's Centre for the Economics of Education and … [Read more...]

UNSW seeks to reset the asylum seeker (aka “illegals”) debate


UNSW News    |     31 October 2013 Australia’s first centre specialising in international refugee law has been launched at the University of New South Wales  (UNSW), with the aim of raising the quality of public policy and debate about asylum seekers and refugees. Based at UNSW Law, the centre has been established through the generosity of  Renata Kaldor AO and Andrew Kaldor AM,  motivated by their own deep concern about Australia’s treatment of refugees and asylum seekers. The Centre is supported by a high-profile advisory board comprised of leading refugee experts, business people and opinion leaders of all political persuasions, including former NSW Premier Nick Greiner and barrister … [Read more...]

Redundancies at Brisbane TAFE

Brisbane TAFE

Courier Mail     |     25 October 2013 A new wave of redundancies is rolling through Queensland’s TAFE sector with about 50 staff - 40 administrative staff and 10 teachers - set to lose their jobs at Brisbane North Institute of TAFE. Queensland Teacher's Union president Kevin Bates said it was the latest hit to the sector still reeling from hundreds of job losses in the past 18 months.  Figures released in July showed 349 redundancies had been accepted by TAFE staff around the state between March 2012 and June 30 this year. We continue to hear a variety of excuses (for job losses)... That this is just part of a normal process. That is simply not true.  What we are seeing is an … [Read more...]

The state of Australian education


30 October 2013 A report  by the Council of Australian Governments Reform Council shows mixed progress on education. Participation in preschool is high and school outcomes in the early years are improving. Nationally, average scores improved in Years 3 and 5 in reading and in Year 5 in numeracy, but there were no improvements in Years 7 and 9.  Australia is also performing behind top countries in these key areas. Year 12 attainment has increased, particularly for Indigenous students. More than a quarter of young people are not fully engaged in work or study after leaving school and this has worsened over five years. While 85% of people aged 20 to 24 had completed year 12 or … [Read more...]

Court rules Swinburne breached work laws

31 October 2013 Failure to consult on campuses closures draws apology and financial contributions to community education The Federal Court of Australia has found that Swinburne University of Technology was guilty of four breaches of the Fair Work Act in that it failed to consult with staff and the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) over its decision last July to shut its Lilydale campus and relocate the design faculty from the Prahran campus in the wake of the Victorian Coalition Government’s $290 million cuts to TAFE. NTEU commenced proceedings in March 2013 against Swinburne in the Federal Court. Swinburne admitted it contravened the Fair Work Act and agreed to make donations … [Read more...]