2018 Award Recipients


2018 Award Recipients

Bay of Plenty and Waikato Tertiary Institutions

Dr Vivienne Cassie Cooper Award 2018

Karen Taylor with Dr Vivienne Cassie Cooper

Karen Taylor is one of two inaugural recipients of the Dr Vivienne Cassie Cooper Award. The Award comprises $5,000 over two years, and enables women to return to study (full-time or part-time) having spent time since graduation caring for whanau or family members, or in the paid or voluntary workforce. Karen is enrolled in a Master of Educational Leadership. She is carrying out case study research on how being Māori and Katorika (Catholic) affects the educational leadership of a tumuaki wahine Katorika (Catholic woman principal).

Huiarau Stewart was also awarded a Dr Vivienne Cassie Cooper Award in 2018, but was unable to attend the Awards Ceremony. Huiarau is undertaking a Master of Business Administration.

Dame Jocelyn Fish Award 2018

The Dame Jocelyn Fish Award gives $1,000 per year, from the second year onwards, to women students at Bethlehem Tertiary Institute, Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology, the University of Waikato, and the Waikato Institute of Technology, who are studying in a non-traditional field for women.

From left to right:

Nowshin Humayun, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Chemical and Biological Engineering

Jahna Walls, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Mechanical Engineering

Emily Sopers, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Environmental Engineering

Dame Jocelyn Fish

Georgia Downey, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Civil Engineering

Holly White, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Chemical Engineering.

The following recipients of the Dame Jocelyn Fish Award were unable to attend the Awards Ceremony.

Alyssa Duijnmayer, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Mechanical and Electrical Engineering

Michelle Pehrson, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Electronics

Emary Venter, Bachelor of Engineering with Honours, specified programme Mechanical Engineering

University of Waikato

University of Waikato Merit Award for Doctoral Study 2018

This award is offered to women students enrolled for the PhD at the University of Waikato. The award is $3,000 per year for up to three years, with an additional $1,000 in the final year – a total of $10,000 per recipient.

Recipients from left to right are:

Michele Melchior - Faculty of Science and Engineering
Michele is studying the reproductive biology and habitat ecology of New Zealand freshwater mussels. She hopes that her research will assist in developing and implementing sound conservation approaches, including captive breeding programmes, to sustain freshwater mussel populations. Freshwater mussels are among the most imperilled organisms in the world. They play a vital role in maintaining the quality of New Zealand’s freshwater systems, by filtering contaminants, bacteria and suspended sediments.

Meghan Stairmand - Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Meghan’s research focuses on perpetrators’ perspectives of family violence - what happens and why during a family violence event? The participants include both women and men. Meghan’s aim is to develop a framework that will help professionals working in the family violence field to understand the range of perpetrators they are working with, and to enable them to provide more tailored treatment approaches.

Kahurangi Waititi - Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies
Kahurangi is exploring how creative processes can be used as vehicles to perpetuate mana motuhake (tribal autonomy and identity) through the production of a film, using Te Whānau a Apanui methodology. Kahurangi hopes that her research will contribute to wider discussions around the value and necessity of creative practice, method, methodology, expression and connection, to the well-being of Māori communities and individual and collective identity.

Katherine Schofield - Faculty of Health, Sport and Human Performance
Katherine’s work involves elite athletes, women and men, and examines the ‘invisible fuelling failure’ that occurs when there is limited dietary energy available, after exercise training, for normal physiological and metabolic functions. Her goal is to understand in a holistic manner the physiological, metabolic, hormonal, and socio-psychological elements in athletes with low energy availability (LEA), with the ultimate goal of improving athlete health and wellbeing.

Dana Clark, from the Faculty of Science and Engineering, also received a Merit Award for Doctoral Study in 2018, but was unable to attend the Awards Ceremony.
Dana is exploring what drives changes in estuaries (which include fjords and lagoons) so that they may be better understood and managed. Estuaries, despite the many benefits they deliver, are often not intrinsically valued by society, and as a result they are one of the most heavily used and threatened natural systems globally. Dana hopes to contribute to the development of a more holistic and standardised approach to monitoring estuary health, that is also more cost effective.

University of Waikato Masters Study Award 2018

This is an award of $2,000 to assist women students who are enrolled in a Masters degree at the University of Waikato.

Recipients of the Award in 2018, from left to right:

Annmaree Warrender – Master of Science (Research).
Annmaree’s research explores how a pair of genes called fitAB might affect the resistance to antibiotic treatment of gonorrhoea, a prevalent sexually transmitted disease. She hopes this research will contribute to new treatments for gonorrhoea, particularly for treating the carrier population.

Kelly Le Quesne – Master of Science
Kelly is studying zooplankton communities in small Waikato lakes and ponds to find out if natural waters and farm ponds have the same species of zooplankton. This research will contribute to water quality monitoring in the Waikato Regional Council area.

Krystal Geraghty – Master of Science
Krystal is researching what led to the 1968-1975 eruptions of Ngauruhoe. She hopes the study will assist with understanding the potential hazard of Ngauruhoe, by gaining knowledge about conditions, trigger and eruption mechanisms. The research should also assist with interpretation of monitoring signals, prior to and during eruptions.

Sukhjeet Singh – Master of Science
Sukhjeet is exploring the use of argon as a collision gas, to reduce polyatomic interferences in inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Argon may reduce interferences on sulfur, arsenic and selenium. Sukhjeet is particularly focussing on sulfur, because it is difficult to measure.

Shalini Guleria – Master of Science (Research)
Shalini’s research involves 3D printing of cancer tissue, to help understand the process of cell-to-cell communication, and as a result to help better understand anti-cancer drug efficacy.

Katharine Levendis – Master of Arts (Applied)
Katharine is studying the mechanisms for how Māori loanwords spread into and become integrated in New Zealand English. Through understanding the mechanisms of borrowings, she hopes to provide new insights into how languages evolve.

Ingrid Lindeman – Master of Science (Research)
Ingrid is exploring how metal-ligand complexes affect calcite growth (stalactites and stalagmites, also known as speleothems). The chronology of their growth layers, and their extensive geographical coverage, mean that speleothem samples are a fundamental tool for terrestrial paleoclimate reconstruction and for understanding climate-system mechanisms.

Ajay Nielsen – Master of Applied Psychology
Ajay’s work seeks to gain a deeper understanding of positive childbirth experiences for New Zealand women. She hopes that this understanding will enable more women be adequately supported during their pregnancy, labour and after birth, so they experience birth in an empowering way.

University of Waikato Engineering Prize 2018

Larissa Kopf, 2018 recipient of the University of Waikato Engineering Prize, pictured with Professor Robyn Longhurst, the University of Waikato’s Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic.

This prize of $1,000 is awarded to the most outstanding woman student in her third year of study towards an engineering degree.

University of Waikato Te Raranga Mātauranga Award 2018

This Award is for $1,000 and is made to Māori women students in the final year of an undergraduate degree.

Recipients of the award are nominated by their faculty.


From left to right:

Tekiteora Rolleston-Gabel is completing conjoint Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees.

Emma Lovell is completing a Bachelor of Teaching.

Grace Rihari is also completing a Bachelor of Teaching.

Catherine Dreadon, who is completing a Bachelor of Social Work, also received an award but was unable to attend the Awards Ceremony.

University of Waikato Emmy Noether Prize in Mathematics 2018

This prize of $1,000 is awarded to the most outstanding woman student in her first year of Mathematics. The 2018 winner is Desiree Paul.

Waikato Institute of Technology

Waikato Institute of Technology Postgraduate Award 2018

Xin Zhang received a Waikato Institute of Technology Postgraduate Award in 2018.

Xin is completing a Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing at Wintec. She is pictured here with Emeritus Professor Noeline Alcorn, Chairperson of the Waikato Graduate Women Educational Trust.