Featured News Indigenous students shine at annual awards night

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Thu, 8 Oct 2020

Indigenous students shine at annual awards night

Three people stand underneath a banner saying
L-R: Professor Martin Nakata; Townsville Spirit Award Recipient, Spirit Price; Councillor Margie Ryder (Townsville City Council sponsors the Townsville Spirit Award). Photo: Karen Bowey, Red Sky Photography

James Cook University has honoured the academic and personal achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at its annual Indigenous Student Awards night.

30 students were honoured with academic merit awards at last night’s ceremony, acknowledging and celebrating the efforts they make to succeed in their tertiary studies.

Professor Martin Nakata, Pro Vice Chancellor of Indigenous Education and Strategy said the awards reflected the hard work of many people.

“Last night’s awards showcase not only the outstanding efforts by our students, but also the support they receive from their families and friends, the high level of academic and pastoral care provided by the staff at JCU’s Indigenous Education and Research Centre and from across the University” he said.

“It was also great to see their families present to celebrate their achievements, as well as the wider community and industry supporters.”

Prof Nakata said the awards also highlighted the range of degrees Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students now study at JCU and the variety of ways they will go on to contribute to the Queensland community after graduation.

“Last night showcased what Indigenous students can achieve when they are given both opportunity and support,” he said. “I hope it inspires all in our community to see the value of a good education.”

2020 Winners:

Arts, Social Sciences & Social Work

  • Sarah Burke
  • Stanley Lenoy


  • Shae-Kia Carroll
  • Peter Prince


  • Phillip Cluff

Business & Commerce

  • Aleirah Woodley
  • Lleyton Anderson


  • Cameron Dodson
  • Shenesse Dempsey

Allied Health

  • Joanne Clarke
  • Mani Gregson

Law & Governance

  • Adrienne Hollis
  • Damon Johnson

Medicine, Dentistry & Pharmacy

  • Sarah Barton
  • Isaac Lange

Nursing & Midwifery

  • Trent Lane
  • Narrelle Mullen


  • Chantelle Blackwell
  • Wayne Cawthorne

Veterinary & Medical Sciences

  • Ashleigh Hazle

Diploma of Higher Education

  • Isabelle Merchant
  • Teyrnon Higginson


  • Desley Dempsey

HDR Acknowledgements

  • Jesse King
  • Tristan Gibbs
  • Tamara Sam
  • Georgia Storm
  • Gerry Turpin

Spirit Awards

  • Tay Sanni Niua
  • Spirit Price

Nikki Strano

Indigenous Student Programs Coordinator

4781 5641