Friday, October 30, 2015

Great news in CQUni Research - ARC results announced

CQUniversity researchers have gained more than $1.3 million worth of grants in the latest round of major announcements from the Australian Research Council.

The Discovery Project (DP) and Discovery Early Researcher Award (DECRA) grants will help computers better learn to classify what they see at a glance, put the teamwork into rail safety, boost chicken health on poultry farms, and help night workers to be more strategic about their sleep patterns.

The University is proud of the success of these researchers, based variously at the Adelaide, Brisbane and Rockhampton campuses, in what is a very competitive and prestigious ARC grant process. 

The successful CQUniversity projects are:

CQUniversity researchers Dr Charli Sargent, Associate Professor Gregory Roach and Professor Drew Dawson have been granted $310,000 over four years to study how sleep can be used strategically to cope with night work.

Dr Charli Sargent, Professor Drew Dawson and Assoc Prof Greg Roach

Providing beneficial strains of friendly gut bacteria at the time of hatching could improve poultry health and performance. That's according to CQUniversity's Dr Dana Stanley who has gained $360,000 over the next three years in a competitive bid to the Discovery Early Career Research Award (DECRA) process of the Australian Research Council.

CQUniversity researcher Dr Anjum Naweed will seek to develop a train driving risk model that includes human factors such as teamwork as well as technical considerations. He will do so thanks to a successful competitive bid for $373,536 over three years, from the Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) program of the Australian Research Council.

Helping computers learn better to classify what they see at a glance has many real-world applications such as document analysis, robotics and medical diagnosis. That's the goal of CQUniversity researcher Professor Brijesh Verma who has gained $275,000 over the next three years, thanks to a competitive bid to the Discovery Project program of the Australian Research Council.

Meanwhile in related news,  CQUniversity is involved in a major Australian Research Council grant team enabling power networks to cope with more roof-top solar generation. Professor Peter Wolfs, Adjunct Laureate Professor Qing-Long Han and Adjunct Associate Professor Fuwen Yang are all involved in the $330,000 project to be hosted by Griffith University, thanks to an ARC Discovery Project grant.

These are highly competitive, national grants, and they do not come easily, so well done to all those who were not just successful in gaining grants but so to those who developed submissions - a great deal of hard work goes into this so everyone should be congratulated. 

Now here are some stats on how CQUniversity stacked up against other institutions: 

Discovery Projects

Two successful research proposals funded – more than any other RUN university (with the exception of UNE, who also got two).

$587,600 in overall funding – the second highest among the RUN Universities.

A 25% success rate (the highest of any Queensland University, and the fourth best result in the sector).

Early Career Research Award

Two successful research proposals funded – more than any other RUN university.

$733,536 in overall funding – almost double the amount of the next closest RUN university.

A 33.3 percent success rate (once again the highest in Queensland AND the highest in the sector! The next closest university was the University of Adelaide at 25.5%).

Overall CQUni was the highest achieving RUN group university in this round and one of the best performers in Queensland. In fact pound-for-pound I think we performed better than the majority of universities out there. 

CQUniversity is emerging as a great Australian university because of the terrific outcomes being delivered right across the University. Today we have seen resounding evidence of this in our research results. 

Congratulations again to everyone involved, I am incredibly proud!


Congratulations to our 2015 Alumni award Winners

The many, many leadership roles carried out by our alumni cohort show the huge value of CQUniversity graduates to all our communities. I am thrilled to announce the winners of the 2015 Alumni Awards, celebrating four of our leading alumni, and the contribution they make in the CQUniverse.

My heartiest congratulations to Brian Babington – CEO of Families Australia and a strong advocate for the rights of some of the most vulnerable people in our communities, Dr Aleicia Holland – a young researcher solving pressing environmental problems, Joan Warner, CEO of Commercial Radio Australia, whose innovative leadership is impacting an entire industry, and Joel Buchholz, a passionate community member giving back his time and expertise in many volunteer roles.

Our alumni can contribute a huge amount to the student experience and business of the University as role models, mentors, and benefactors of our students, and public advocates of our institution. We should be extremely proud of the achievements of our alumni, and it is my pleasure to celebrate these four alumni award winners who exemplify outstanding career achievements and community service.

In the coming months, the award recipients will be honoured at CQUniversity Graduation ceremonies. In the meantime, please read more about their achievements below, and join me in admiring their impressive efforts.  

Monday, October 26, 2015

New quality indicators prove CQUni is emerging as a great uni

The Federal Government's new Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT) website shows how CQUniversity shines in providing study support and enabling good graduate employment and salary outcomes.

The website enables comparison of CQUniversity ratings against major university alliances, including the Group of Eight (Go8) coalition of leading Australian universities and the Australian Technology Network (ATN) collaborative group of five major universities. The results show that CQUniversity is delivering when it comes to successful outcomes for students and this is one of the reasons why CQUniversity is emerging as a great Australian university. 

Comparisons reveal:
  • CQUni's full-time employment of graduates rate higher than all Go8s
  • CQUni's study support rated higher than all Go8s
  • CQUni's full-time employment of graduates rate higher than all ATNs
  • CQUn's median salary for graduates higher than all ATNs
  • CQUni's study support rated higher than all ATNs

Comparisons of individual study areas reveal:
  • In Architecture & Building, CQUni had the highest full-time graduate employment rate (95.3%) and median salary ($69,000) of ALL universities
  • In Education, CQUni and JCU had the joint second highest full-time graduate employment rate of  86.8% (only beaten by QUT with 86.9%).
  • In Engineering, CQUni was in the Top 5 for full-time graduate employment and in the Top 3 for median salaries, nationally.
  • In Health Services & Support, CQUni was in the Top 4  for full-time graduate employment and median salaries, nationally.
  • In Computing & Information Systems, CQUni (tied with USC) was in the Top 4 for full-time graduate employment and Top 2 for median salaries, nationally.
These ratings reveal some great things for not just CQUniversity but for regional universities as well. It shows that regional unis have a vital part to play in shaping our nation and that our graduates are up to the task when in comes to making an impact on communities and industry. What's more many of these graduates are making that impact in regional Australia - where their skills and expertise is most needed. 

The Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching website at is independent and an excellent site for unbiased reporting. It provides prospective students with relevant and transparent information about Australian universities from the perspective of recent students and graduates.

Friday, October 23, 2015

New CQUniversity Cairns campus ready to take Cairns to top of its game

CQUniversity Cairns isn’t just a place to kick-start careers - I am determined to to see the new  $15 million CBD campus expand to become a hub that will grow the region’s economy, and set development priorities for the rest of regional Australia.

Queensland Governor Paul de Jersey AC, State Treasurer Curtis Pitt, Cairns Regional Council Mayor Bob Manning, and Member for Cairns Mr Rob Pyne joined us to formally open the new campus at CQUniversity Cairns Square on Wednesday, October 21. The event officially completes the transition to a two-university city, just three years after the University first opened a smaller study centre in the community. 

Within five years the new campus is expected to have attracted 2500 local and international students, employed over 60 academics and professional staff, be producing more than 700 skilled graduates annually, and have generated an economic spin-off worth a huge $224 million.

Our expansion into Cairns demonstrates our national reputation for supporting our students to achieve, no matter how they choose to study. 

Many of our regional students, and also our international students, tell us they want to study in regional centres, and we believe that Cairns will deliver them a great experience not only for study, but also for lifestyle.

The campus, is already supporting more than 600 distance education students and is also currently taking enrolments for face-to-face and distance study in 2016, with program options including Engineering, Education, Business and Accounting, IT, Nursing, Paramedic Science, Professional Communication, Public Health and Tourism. 

There are also large teaching spaces for class and residential schools, computer and videoconferencing labs, Paramedic Science, Nursing and Engineering labs, a library, staff offices, study spaces and a welcoming reception area. It is also home to CQUniversity’s new Centre for Tourism and Regional Opportunity (C-TARO), with a vision to lead and revitalise Northern Australian tourism. 

I'd really like to thank the Cairns community and local business for getting behind the University and making it possible for us to establish a CQUniversity campus in the region. CQUniversity is looking forward to making a really positive impact on the region by improving access to higher education and creating new jobs and opportunities. 

Some key stats:
  • 2500 - Expected student numbers within five years, including;
  • 500 – number of international students within five years
  • $43,843 – the average expenditure value of each international student to economy
  • $15 million – anticipated non-salary campus investment by CQUniversity over five years
  • 60 – expected number of campus staff to be employed within five years
  • $7.6 million – estimated annual local staff salary expenditure within five years
  • $1 million – investment by Queensland Government in campus engineering labs
  • 714 – number of graduates locally produced each year by 2020 
  • $224 million – estimated total economic spin-off impact on Cairns economy by 2020 
Unveiling the plaque at the official opening

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Universal success for CQUni Universals

It was great to see such a fantastic CQUni presence at this year's Australian University Games and I am also happy to report back that our competitors had some great success as well. Here are some of the fantastic results:
  • A games record discus throw of 54.87m helped CQUniversity student Taryn Gollshewsky lead the line for her team at the recent Australian University Games on the Gold Coast. Bundaberg-based Taryn's gold medal winning throw was more than 3m better than her nearest competitor in the women's discus element of the Games. Taryn also helped out our Mixed Touch team showing true team spirit to the Universals.
  • Steven Tripney, first-year undergraduate distance student (CQUni Sydney campus) also won gold with a 14.88m triple jump. Steven celebrated the AUGs along with his wife and seven-month-old baby who travelled from Sydney to be a part of the Games. 
  • Our Black Belt competitor Kathleen Smith travelled from Toowoomba to compete, coming a fine second to her opponent and becoming a Silver Medallist.
  • Three students received the prestigious green and gold merit award. Green and Gold Merit awards recognise and reward outstanding performances at National Australian University Sport events.Congratulations to Taryn Gollshewsky, Jackson Hughes and Justin Cridland.
  • Nilau Kon (CQUni Brisbane campus) made the semis in 200 Metre Sprint, just missing out on Finals by 0.02 of a second. Nilau is very motivated to compete in 2016 and shows a strong sense of commitment to his sprinting and can't wait to take out finals next year.
  • Our men's touch team won Silver in the competition which is an incredible achievement for our debut into the Australian University Games. 
  • Our mixed touch players were up against odds with lower numbers compared to other universities, however they still managed to take out a win with high spirits. The physical endurance and dedication of this team were particularly noted.
  • Our Rugby team overall ranked 16th and have already commenced plans for next year's competition expressing enthusiasm and dedication to establishing a student-led CQUni Rugby 7s program.
  • Undoubtedly our most passionate sporting team, our Cricket team consisted of a diverse membership including international postgraduate students who highlighted that representing their University has been a great honour and an incredible experience. The Sportsmanship and representation of our Cricket T20 team were second to none.
Well done to all our competitors, DVC Jenny Roberts and Student Representative Council Executive Officer, Jana Paris for making CQUni's fantastic showing at the event possible.

Friday, October 2, 2015

CQUni strides ahead in World Uni Rankings

We had some great news this week that CQUniversity has ranked within the top 600 universities in the world in the Times High Education Rankings. These rankings are the most esteemed university rankings in the world and it is truly amazing to see CQUniversity feature. What’s more the rankings this year have expanded their methodology to more comprehensively assess relevant data across a number of key performance indicators. 

For anyone outside the higher ed sector our ranking may not actually seem very remarkable but I must stress that it is. There are thousands of universities across the world (roughly around 20,000) so to make it in to the Top 600 is an incredible achievement. If you’re still not convinced, this ranking also means that CQUniversity is now ranked among the top three percent in the world.

What makes this achievement even more incredible is not quite three years ago, we weren’t even in the Top 3000 institutions worldwide.  The University has come such a long way in such a short space of time and I am so thrilled about this. Every person connected to CQUniversity should feel extremely proud of this ranking!

We have done a lot of work in the past few years to improve research, learning and teaching, as well as our services and student experience and I believe this hard work is really starting to pay off. We’re not stopping here though – we still have more to do and more to achieve. This is why it is so exciting to be a part of CQUniversity right now.

Everyone at CQUniversity is 100 percent committed to our strong to Great vision and this ranking proves what we already know – that CQUniversity is emerging as one of Australia's truly great universities.

Congratulations to all of the other Aussie Universities featured in the rankings this year– especially our Regional University Network (RUN) partners Southern Cross University (SCU) and the University of Southern Queensland (USQ).