Indigenous Allied Health Student Academic Achievement Award
Our student members are recognised every year at the IAHA Indigenous Allied Health Awards. We congratulate all who have been recipients of this award and look forward to announcing the next winner at the IAHA National Conference Awards Gala Dinner.
Read about our Student Award Winners below:
2019 Winner – Chloe Wegener
Chloe is in her final year of Physiotherapy. She has consistently demonstrated high academic progress (GPA 6.16) throughout her course and has contributed to university life by being a Yunggorendi Tutorial Program (YTP) Tutor. In 2017 she was the recipient of the Resthaven Indigenous Scholarship.
2018 Winner Nicole Velkoski
Nicole is a Wiradjuri woman that has just completed her final year of her Psychology undergraduate degree with a distinction average. She is a mother of two children, works full time and up until this year has been studying full time. On top of the responsibilities that Nicole has in both her personal life and her study and work life, Nicole has been actively engaging in building a supportive community within the Edith Cowan University campus as well as outside in the Perth community.
Nicole volunteered within the ECU peer mentoring program in 2018 and was nominated and successfully sat on the Vice Chancellor Student Advisory committee two years in a row, where she actively contributed to conversations around the rights of all her peers as well as passionately ensuring that such opportunities and many other opportunities continue to exist or are created for other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in years to come. Nicole sat on the Indigenous Allied Health Australia (IAHA) student representative committee in 2018 and amongst all this, Nicole has also been volunteering as a drug and alcohol counsellor.
2017 Winner – Ash Wright
Ash is in her final 2 years of study with Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) with a distinction average. Ash has worked as a volunteer in her community transporting Elders to doctors and shopping. She dances as part of a Koori women’s group and attends many gatherings doing clearings. She has helped a local elder for 2 years to get a plaque at the mission where she was taken to acknowledge it was there and let us all heal.
2016 Winner – Toni Trevor
Toni is an advocate for Indigenous Health and a proud Kalkadoon and Torres Strait Islander woman. Toni is a 3rd year undergraduate social work student studying at James Cook University. Toni has worked very hard and achieved commendable grades and has been invited to undertake her Honours.
Toni has been employed as an Indigenous Hospital Liaison Officer (IHLO), since 2013 and works part-time at the Townsville Emergency Department. Toni also has a position on the Cleveland Youth Detention Centre’s Advisory Board Committee, and has volunteered her time since 2014 to assist Indigenous youth at the centre. Toni and the Advisory committee have recently advocated for changes within the youth justice system to ensure that all staff were culturally capable in their dealings with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth and their families.
2015 Winner – Sarah Logan
Sarah Logan is a Walpri woman from the western desert of the Northern Territory. A high achieving final year student within the Bachelor of Pharmacy program (with a current GPA of 6.15 out of 7), our winner has been awarded a Vice Chancellors Top 5% of Health Science award for her academic achievements. Upon graduation our winner will be the first identified Aboriginal person to graduate from UniSA with this degree.
Our winner is described as an outstanding leader within the Indigenous Students services unit – volunteering at NAIDOC week, reconciliation events, football united programs and peer support events for the unit. She also mentors and supports another Aboriginal pharmacy student since this person began their degree. Sarah has already secured a pharmacy internship after graduating and has articulated a strong desire to positively influence the health outcomes of Indigenous Australians through provision of culturally appropriate and equitable medication access to Aboriginal communities.
2014 Winner – Mr Nathan Canuto
Nathan Canuto is a 30 years old Torres Strait Islander man from Cairns in Far North Queensland. He is currently studying in his final year of a Bachelor of Behavioural Science (Psychology) degree at Charles Darwin University (CDU) in the Northern Territory. Nathan has demonstrated consistently high academic progress throughout the course and has a current course grade point average of 6.75 out of a possible 7.
He was recently awarded the ‘2014 Top End NAIDOC Scholar of the Year’ award and in addition to his studies and other commitments, is an active member of the IAHA Student Representative Committee. Nathan has been the Indigenous Student Ambassador for the CDU Office of Indigenous Academic Support since 2013 and participates regularly in university events such as school/community group visits, Open Days, Scholarship and other ceremonies.
Nathan actively volunteers his time for IAHA events such as career expos and school visits and is an inspirational role model and mentor for enrolled students and future students who visit the university.
2013 Winner – Trevor Ritchie
Trevor is a Kaurna man and is currently involved in the revival of the Kaurna language. He is in his final year of his Occupational Therapy degree at the University of South Australia and academically has always performed at an above average level according to his Program Director. He works as a mentor to Aboriginal students of primary and preschool ages, which has sparked a passion to work in Paediatrics with Aboriginal children following his graduation.
Trevor has served on steering committees and has been a strong advocate for Aboriginal issues, occupational therapy and culturally appropriate practice within the University of South Australia.
He is described as a leader among Indigenous students on campus and actively involved in activities within the Indigenous Student Support Unit for the University’s Division of Health Science. He was also a semi-finalist in the 2012 South Australian Aboriginal Young Achiever Award.