Students on short term study program in India.
Students on short term study program in India.
16 December 2013

For the seven students who will graduate with The University of Queensland Advantage Awards this December, study at UQ has provided much more than a degree.

It has opened doors to independent research, leadership programs, internships, and overseas study opportunities.

The program, which is available to undergraduate students from all disciplines, combines participation in a wide range of co-curricular activities with workshops designed to accelerate their professional development.

UQ Office of Undergraduate Education Director Dr Jessica Gallagher said the UQ Advantage Award encouraged students to make the most of their time at university and to get involved in activities outside of the lecture theatre.

“Employers are looking for well-rounded graduates who actively seek opportunities for learning and growth,” she said.

“The program was introduced to encourage students to challenge themselves, follow their ambitions, and participate in activities which complement their academic studies.

“We are delighted that only eighteen months after its launch, about 3000 students are participating in the program and it has received industry recognition through a Lord Mayor’s Business Award for Excellence in International Education Delivery.

“The program has attracted the attention of alumni and industry contacts, who are assisting with delivering the Award’s symposium series.”

Bachelor of Pharmacy student, Karmen Quek, who graduated from university last week (Friday, 13 December), said that the Award program led to formative experiences at home and abroad.

“My pharmacy degree does not leave much room to study electives, so the program gave me the chance to take on new experiences and made studying overseas a reality,” Karmen said.

“I had my first taste of research in the UQ Summer Research Program, which truly made me realise the importance of perseverance and discipline in the field of research.

“Then, I went to Europe for a summer school in France, which highlighted the newest, cutting edge innovations in cancer research.

“The award has fostered a ‘can do’ attitude in me. Nothing is impossible if you set your mind to it.

For David McEniery, who will be graduating with Honours in History, the award opened doors to research, mentoring and global experiences, giving him a competitive edge.

“I received a grant to travel to Thailand on a Gap Medics Pre-medical student placement, and attended an International Summer School in India where I experienced the culture and made friends from around the world,” David said.

“Closer to home, I had the opportunity to conduct research at the UQ Centre for Clinical Research and Queensland Brain Institute, which has been influential in sharpening my desire to contribute to the future of medical research.

“I was also a mentor for the UQ Young Achievers Program, where I worked with as part of a team to guide over one hundred senior school students’ transition from school to university.

“The UQ Advantage Award allowed me to participate in many events and activities that I would not have been able to do otherwise."

Interested undergraduate students can register for the UQ Advantage Award program via mySI-net.

To find out more, visit

Media: Dr Jessica Gallagher, 3346 7012, 0435 961 173,