22 June 2016

2016 ISSI scholarship recipients

Two excellent candidates have won the recent Trawalla Foundation–Weizmann Australia scholarship to attend the 2016 Weizmann Institute of Science International Summer Science Institute (ISSI) in Israel.  They are high school graduates Cherry Zheng and Matthew Goh, both now in their first year of studies at the Australian National University (ANU).

Cherry and Matthew will be in Israel from July 5-28, joining over 80 students from around the world.  They will be based on the Weizmann Institute campus in Rehovot where they will meet and work with world leading Weizmann scientists.

Weizmann Australia’s Executive Director, Rina Michael expressed immense gratitude to the Trawalla Foundation and its trustees for their support in providing such a unique and rich experience for the students.

“We are very grateful to the Trawalla Foundation as their support will allow Cherry and Matthew to experience the challenges and rewards of scientific research, whilst learning more about the Weizmann Institute as an elite global science research institute. It will be an experience they will take with them throughout their lives, both on a personal and professional level,” she said.

Cherry is undertaking a PhB (Bachelor of Philosophy) at ANU and plans to major in sustainability science.  She said she has always been curious about how the world works and cannot wait to go to Israel:

“It’s phenomenal that I’ve been given the opportunity to travel and undertake research, only months after graduating from high school. Science has always been something I’ve been reluctant to let go of but struggled to justify persisting with – this opportunity has gone a long way in affirming that I can’t go wrong pursuing what fascinates me.”

Equally Matthew is taking a double degree at ANU – a Bachelor of Engineering (Research and Development) (Honours) combined with a Bachelor of Science.  He believes his scientific bent will draw him either into cutting-edge engineering or immediately applicable science such as developing quantum computers.  Matthew is equally excited by the opportunity:

“I’m passionate about the application of the physical sciences to the real world, and this opportunity is nothing short of incredible. The experience of crossing the world to conduct real scientific research and meet like-minded friends from across the globe is a life-changing one that will no doubt kick-start my experience in STEM research. I can’t wait to attend!”

Matthew has had a deeply personal journey between science and technology:

“In recent years, I’ve seen my paraplegic mother aided by a variety of high-tech surgeries and mobility aids, which have really driven home the enormous impact that the work of scientists and engineers can have on ordinary lives,” he concluded.

Weizmann Australia will post a report of their experiences in the next newsletter and on this website.  Stay tuned!

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