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Past Kick Start Recipients

These initiatives were made possible through the USU’s Kick Start Grants program, which offers exceptional students the financial support to further develop their skills, networks and opportunities. For more information about the Kick Start Grant click here

Education and Social Work "Excellence in Visual Arts Teaching" Exhibition

At the end of semester one while most students are manically preparing for exams, the final year MTeach Visual Arts students from the Faculty of Education and Social Work came together to coordinate an exhibition of their final assessment artworks.

The “Excellence in Visual Arts Teaching” exhibition, which marked 75 years if the Education and Social Work Faculty, was opened by the new Dean of the faculty, Professor Robert Tierney.

The calibre of the exhibition, held in the Vaucluse House stables, was of such a high standard that the USU Vice President Courtney Tight had a complex job awarding the USU Prize for best artwork. 

Students were required to work in a medium unfamiliar to them and relate the theme of the individual artworks to the venue, Vaucluse House, in some way or form. The House itself has an interesting social history, charged with political, feminist and environmental concerns. Many of these themes are apparent in the variety of subjects depicted in the artworks.

The Dean and Ms Tight were extremely impressed by the range of media employed in the creation of the various artworks. In the end, Ms Tight was proud to present the USU Prize to Quinn Elson, for her sculpture and mixed media artwork entitled “Mrs Wentworth’s Fete and Illuminations”.

The opening of the exhibition on June 9th was made possible by the receipt of a Kick Start grant from the University of Sydney Union. The grant assisted in the successful development and management of this event and made provision for the Union to present an “Excellence Award” to a student of their choice after perusing the contributions to the show. Courtney Tight, Vice President of the Union, awarded this prize to Quinn Elson for her sculpture and mixed media artwork entitled “Mrs Wentworth’s Fete and Illuminations”.











Quinn Elson “Mrs Wentworth’s Fete & Illuminations” sculpture & mixed media

















Caitlin O’Loughlin “Onward Through Flowers and Weed” mixed media













David Ormsby “Untitled #2 from the Garden Sculpture series” metal, wire, acrylic spray paint














Dexter Dax Atienza “Pragmatic Construction” paper, pen and acrylic












Elizabeth Emerson “Untitled” textiles













Lauren Jones “Nameless” ceramics
















Peta Dzubiel “About 1829” mixed media

Indigenous Health Forum 2010: Breaking Barriers

In May the USU joined forces with Sydney University Medical Society and MIRAGE to present the annual Indigenous Health Forum, which this year was based around the theme “Breaking Barriers”.

Guest speakers included representatives from the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME), David Brockman from the Australian Indigenous Doctors Association (AIDA), Ngiare Brown from the Poche Centre, Gael Kennedy from Filling the Gap, Jeff McMullen from the Ian Thorpe Foundation and Mark Bloxsome, an Aboriginal Community Program Officer. Annabelle Celloe, a medical student from the Sydney Medical School, and Justin Bloxsome, from Wollongong, co-hosted the event.

This year’s event offered insight into the ‘barriers’ affecting Indigenous health and guests discussed the strategies currently being employed to break these down. Education and cultural tolerance were underlying themes in many points of discussion.

Students heard firsthand accounts of projects currently underway which aim to improve the problems in Indigenous Health and were inspired by stories from guests such as Gael Kennedy, who organises volunteer dentists for remote Aboriginal communities, and Ngiare Brown, who discussed current research in the field. True to its name, many students felt a breaking down of the cross-cultural barriers, particularly after a talk given by Mark Bloxsome detailed his experience working in remote Aboriginal communities, and learned from AIME how they could become a mentor for Indigenous students to help them complete school and continue their education at university.

The Indigenous Health Forum demonstrated what can and is being done to improve Indigenous health and how people can become involved in this process, to change the future of Indigenous Australians for the better and break down the barriers that have stood in our way.

The USU is proud to nurture the academic endeavours of its students.


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