VC's Update - Reflection on the past week

4 August 2017

Hello everyone,

I would like to start this week's blog by reflecting on what has been an incredibly tough week for our community with the release of the report into sexual assault and harassment.

So many of you have shown bravery in not only telling your stories but by also taking part in the survey, ensuring the results give us a full understanding of what is happening here on our campus. Through your courage, we can better understand the extent of the problem, improve the way we provide support and reduce the incidence of sexual misconduct.

Let me say again how sorry I am to anyone who has been affected by sexual assault or harassment while at ANU. I am committed to using this report as a catalyst for change to make this campus a safer place for students, staff and our community.

In an email to the community earlier this week I committed the University to taking a number of actions in response to this report. I pledge we will do more, and we will not cease until this stops happening at ANU.

The past week also marked our 71st anniversary and it was great to see the community come together to celebrate.

At the event I spoke about some exciting developments happening at the College of Engineering and Computer Science. There will be more announced on the expansion of CECS in coming weeks.

I also had the pleasure of announcing our inaugural Distinguished Educators who will play a pivotal role in providing greater leadership in innovation in education on campus. They are:

  • Professor Paul Francis (ANU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences) 
  • Professor Michael Platow (ANU College of Medicine, Biology and Environment) 
  • Dr Carol Hayes (ANU College of Asia and the Pacific) 
  • Dr Catherine Frieman (ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences) 
  • Associate Professor Asmi Wood (ANU College of Law) 
  • Dr John Minns (ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences)

The Distinguished Educators program is an important part of helping us meet our Strategic Plan by investing in innovation in education and our very best teachers. Congratulations again to these six outstanding educators.

Stage two of the ANU Grand Challenges Scheme opened on Tuesday with the release of 37 video entries.  I am excited by the enthusiasm and engagement we've seen on the portal so far, and encourage you to log in and comment on some of the outstanding Grand Challenge ideas.

You may have experienced some delays when using the portal. We are aware of these technical issues and have put in place a solution just this afternoon. Please be patient with us as we work through this update - this is the first time we have run the Grand Challenges scheme and we are learning as we go.