Feeling good: Help change someone’s life – and the world – on QUT Giving Day
Brisbane nurse Stephanie Bellina knows first-hand the life-changing impact public generosity can have on someone’s life … and how supporters of this year’s QUT Giving Day on May 20 can make a difference to students’ education, as well as vital research and community programs.
Back in 2014, as a 17-year-old from the small Queensland town of Childers, Stephanie moved to Brisbane and embarked on her university studies at QUT with the help of a $5000 scholarship funded by donors.
“The Learning Potential Fund helped me realise my dream of studying at university and now I’m a registered nurse,” she said.
Today, Stephanie works in a hospital special care nursery and is training to move into neonatal intensive care.
The Learning Potential Fund (LPF) has provided more than 33,000 scholarships over the past 22 years to low-income students and will be one of the beneficiaries of QUT Giving Day on May 20.
The online event will highlight scholarships and research projects ranging from helping koalas after bushfires to protecting the Great Barrier Reef (see list below).
The Executive Director of QUT Advancement, Margo Powell, said 2021 marked the university’s third Giving Day.
The last Giving Day in 2019 attracted about 2000 donors and raised more than $800,000.
“Giving Day is a day when people can really make a difference and support research projects and education initiatives that are designed to change the world,” Ms Powell said.
“This year, our goal is to raise $1 million and rally 2,021 donors in 24 hours. We know QUT has many passionate supporters, including thousands of alumni, and we hope they can come together and make it happen.
“People can read more about our research projects and scholarships on the QUT Giving Day site and make their donations online to their chosen cause.”
This year’s QUT Giving Day recipients will include:
QUT Learning Potential Fund
The fund supports promising students who are financially disadvantaged and might not otherwise have the opportunity of a university education. It’s the largest perpetual endowment fund of its type in Australia and has provided 33,000 scholarships since 1998. Donations are matched dollar for dollar by QUT, which means your generosity goes further.
Technology to save our koalas
Bushfires devastated koala populations across Australia last year but finding survivors in the wake of natural disasters is a difficult task at ground level. Instead, QUT is using drones and artificial intelligence (AI) detection to spot them from above – a faster and more accurate method. This leading-edge technique involves using drones fitted with infrared cameras and software containing an algorithm to identify the heat signatures of koalas.
Restore the Great Barrier Reef
The Great Barrier Reef faces many challenges, including the crown-of-thorns starfish – voracious predators responsible for an estimated 40 per cent of the reef’s total decline in coral cover. QUT roboticists have developed the world’s first robot that can detect and kill these starfish on the reef. The RangerBot also has a sister robot, the LarvalBot, which can boost coral breeding through distributing coral larval in a modern “coral IVF” to restore coral populations.
Indigenous Chair in Creative Industries
This new role aims to amplify the role that Indigenous knowledge, perspectives and practices play in our local, national and international communities. This includes promoting Indigenous knowledge through practice, research and nationwide storytelling and supporting creative outreach programs. The inaugural Indigenous Chair in Creative Industries is acclaimed playwright and artistic director Wesley Enoch.
Precision treatment for prostate cancer
Prostate cancer affects one in seven Australian men in their lifetimes and is the third most common cause of cancer death. Prostate cancer treatment often starts off effective, but then tumour cells can adapt to survive. Current treatments can also lead to medical complications that can last a lifetime. Better treatments are needed and the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre (APCRC-Q) at QUT is developing new treatments and therapeutic drugs.
Budding Entrepreneur Scholarships
These new scholarships help innovative students with a passion for entrepreneurial action develop their business goals. Four young women were awarded the inaugural scholarships in 2021 and the program will be expanded in 2022 with the help of public support.
To donate to QUT Giving Day, visit https://qutgivingday.com/