Western NSW students receive Victor Chang Science awards

Thirty-three year 11 students from across Western NSW have been recognised for their scientific ability and commitment by the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute.

The students who travelled to Dubbo from as far east as Lithgow and far west as Lightning Ridge were presented with Victor Chang School Science Awards.

The awards recognise the efforts of students who reach a high level and display passion for science at a time when participation in school science is declining.

Named after the late cardiac surgeon and pioneer of modern heart transplantation, the awards aim to foster development and encourage future generations to carry on Victor Chang’s legacy.

Dr Ralph Patrick from the institute was on hand to present the awards and said he was impressed with the talent in Western NSW.

“It’s encouraging to hear about the students’ passion. A passion for science generally starts with high school and continues on afterwards,” he said.

“It’s also very encouraging to see the support of parents and teachers. They have taken the time to be here and I think that support is just so important.”

As well receiving the prestigious award, winning students were also extended an invitation to join more than 200 other students from across NSW on a tour of the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute in Sydney.

The Institute is dedicated to finding cures for cardiovascular disease and discoveries made have already saved lives.

“Students who visit the institute will hear a talk from one of the scientists and then tour around the labs, to show the different equipment and hear about some of the projects,” Dr Patrick said.

“It’s an opportunity for see where their passion could lead them if they continue to pursue it.”

Director of Public Schools Denis Armstrong said said it was great to see science high achievers being recognised.

“Education in the sciences are critically important to the preparation for Australia to continue to meet the needs of the scientific community to make positive gains in research,” he said.

We have a proud history in research and over many years we have seen Australia innovatively move forward in areas of sciences and we applaud the opportunity to recognise young people who help that.”