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QUT Chemistry ‘founding fathers’ supporting students 66 years on

02 June 2017

The contribution of three ‘founding fathers’ of Chemistry education at QUT will be honoured in 2017 through awards that celebrate the achievements of today’s students.

From semester 2 of 2017, the Len Amos Memorial Learning Potential Fund Scholarship will be offered to one student studying Chemistry each year who is experiencing financial challenges to continuing their studies.

Mr Amos was a member of the academic staff and was noted as “a gentleman, a scholar and an excellent teacher”, having spent 30 years at Queensland Institute of Technology (QIT) and prior to that at the Central Technical College (CTC) from 1951 to 1981.

The Len Amos Memorial Scholarship was created in 2000 with funds raised and donated by Chemistry staff through Summer programs run over a period of 20 years.

The initial $20,000 gift from the staff of the then School of Physical Sciences was matched by QUT and has since been invested in the QUT Learning Potential Fund endowment. The investment earnings on the endowment fund support the Len Amos Memorial Learning Potential Fund Scholarship, valued at $3,500 when offered in first semester, and $1,750 when offered in second semester.

Byron Watkins Prize

The Byron Watkins Prize was first established in 1980 in honour of Mr Byron Watkins, the foundation Chief Instructor of the Chemistry Department of the former Central Technical College. The value of the prize was originally decided by the committee of the Past Students’ Association on an annual basis.

In 2017, the Byron Watkins Prize is valued at $1,000 and will be awarded to the graduand completing a QUT degree course with a major in Chemistry who has achieved the highest grade point average of all students graduating with a major in Chemistry.

Originally sponsored by the Industrial and Applied Chemistry Past Students’ Association, in its first few years the Byron Watkins Prize was awarded to “the graduating student in the Associate Diploma in the Applied Chemistry Course who has shown the highest level of achievement during the course”.

In 2000 and 2004, two further donations were made by the QUT Industrial Chemists Group and Industrial and Applied Chemistry Past Students’ Association, led by staff members Mr Neil Seils and the late Mr Rowland Noakes. The funds to establish the prize were raised through the profits on events managed by the Industrial Chemists Group and donations.

Frank Oliver Prize

Frank Oliver was the foundation Head of the School of Applied Science from 1967 to 1973 and before that Head of the School of Chemistry, whose service as an excellent teacher dated back to QIT's predecessor, the Central Technical College.

In recognition of his founding role, the Frank Oliver Prize was established in 2000 with a donation from the QUT Industrial Chemists Group and Industrial and Applied Chemistry Past Students’ Association, led by staff members Mr Neil Seils and the late Mr Rowland Noakes.

The funds to establish the prize were raised through profits from events managed by the Industrial Chemists Group and donations, and the original prize was also awarded to high achieving students in the Associate Diploma in the Applied Chemistry Course.

In 2017, the Frank Oliver Prize is valued at $1,000 and will be awarded to the graduand completing a QUT Honours degree course with a major in Chemistry who has achieved the highest grade point average.

Visit the scholarships page for more information.

Len Amos (middle), Roland 'Rolly' Noakes (left) and Eric O'Reilly (right).