To date CASS has awarded 681 Travel Awards totalling $2,241.978.00 to support post-doctoral, early career researchers to attend international conferences, where they may present their current research findings and meet overseas colleagues.
Some reports from recent CASS Travel Grant recipients:
Dr Isabel Lopez Sanchez, Research Fellow, Centre for Eye Research, Melbourne.
“The CASS Foundation Travel Award enabled me to present my research at the Keystone Symposia: Mitochondrial Biology and Selective Autophagy Conference in Kyoto, Japan, in April 2018. This conference is a prestigious scientific gathering that takes place only every two years, and provides a high-quality, international forum for communication, interaction and collaboration for over 500 scientists with a focus on mitochondrial and autophagy research. This is a highly specialised field with relatively few international meetings, and therefore it was a unique opportunity to learn the latest research developments, tools and techniques from other experts in my area of research…
“Furthermore, my trip to Japan allowed me to interact with world experts in my field, which is not possible living in Australia. Thanks to this award, I was able to share some of the techniques optimised in our laboratory and exchange protocols for my current research.”
Dr Xiaoshan Lin, Department of Civil & Infrastructure Engineering at RMIT University, attended the 2018 Composite Materials Congress (CMC) in Stockholm Sweden, organized by the International Association of Advanced Materials (IAAM), in June 2018.
“The conference had brought together academic and industrial people from many different countries, including Sweden, Australia, China, US, UK, Japan, South Korea, France, Italy, Germany, and so on. It was my honour to be invited by the conference committee to give a talk at the conference on the topic ‘Numerical modelling of ultra-high-performance fibre reinforced concrete panels under intense impact’.
…. “I really appreciate the feedback that I received from other researchers, which was not only encouraging, but also beneficial to the improvement of my current research. In addition, by listening to presentations given by other researchers, I have learnt a lot of cutting-edge research work in the area of composite materials in the world, which has broadened my mind and inspired me with new ideas.”
Dr Allison Pearson from the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology at the Plant Research Centre, South Australia was assisted to attend the 2018 Gordon Research Conference, ‘Salt and Water Stress in Plants’, in June 2018, at the picturesque ski resort of Waterville Valley, New Hampshire, USA.
“The conference on ‘Salt and Water Stress in Plants’ consists of about 200 scientists from around the world who specialise in the research of salinity and water stress of many types of agricultural crops including wheat, barley, maize and rice …. This conference gave me the chance to meet new people from around the world, many of whom I will remain in contact, and with whom we may be able to have future collaborations.”
Dr Sarah Boyle, an early-career post-doctoral researcher at the Centre for Cancer Biology, SA Pathology and the University of South Australia, attended the Gordon Research Conference (GRC) and associated seminar (GRS) for Mammary Gland Biology and Breast Cancer in Lucca, Italy.
“The GRS, ‘Branching Out: Exploring the Cellular Processes Driving Mammary Gland Development and Disease’, was held for two days pre-conference and was an interactive forum for post-graduate students and early career researchers to present their work, receive feedback from their peers, and make new connections with researchers at a similar stage of career. My abstract was selected for an oral presentation for the GRS and I was pleased with the discussion that my work generated and welcomed the feedback. There was also a mentoring component to the seminar, offering tools and advice for up-and-coming scientists. The GRS was therefore highly beneficial for me as it allowed me to present my exciting findings, but also meet the next generation of my peers in this field … and gain knowledge and relationships instrumental to my future career prospects and research aspirations."
Dr. David Scott, Senior Research Fellow at Monash Health, Monash University attended the World Congress on Osteoporosis, Osteoarthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases (WCOIOF-ESCEO) in Krakow, Poland, in April, 2018.
“This conference registered around 3,900 delegates and presented over 1,200 submitted abstracts from researchers around the world. I found the quality of the scientific program to be excellent and learned of many exciting new research developments including novel exercise programs for muscle and bone during ageing, as well as state-of-the-art musculoskeletal imaging techniques. Furthermore, there were a number of networking opportunities with outstanding international leaders in the field of musculoskeletal health.
“My participation in the conference included a 15-minute oral presentation as part of a 1-hour non-sponsored symposium, and also a poster presentation.…Several discussions following this talk have already developed into potentially exciting new collaborations.”
In April 2018, Dr Tatiana Soares da Costa, from La Trobe University Institute for Molecular Science presented her work at the prestigious American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) Experimental Biology Meeting in San Diego, California.
“This is an annual multidisciplinary scientific meeting that features plenary and award lectures, workshops, oral and posters sessions and on-site career services. I was fortunate enough to be selected to attend the career development event held by the ASBMB the day before the conference kicked off…(and) attending the Experimental Biology Meeting was a truly rewarding and inspiring experience. New ideas were generated from lectures and presentations, in addition to the useful advice and feedback given during poster and oral discussions. It was particularly rewarding to learn that the research I am pursuing in Australia is world class and I was reassured that I am definitely following the right career path.”
Dr Zoe Smith, early career researcher in the School of Life and Environmental Sciences at Deakin University, attended the ‘Spring SciX’ in Glasgow, Scotland in April 2018.
“SciX is a meeting held under the auspices of FACSS (the Federation of Analytical Chemistry and Spectroscopy Societies) which covers a wide range of topics related to analytical science. ...The organisers chose to have a focus on early career researchers for the majority of the program, with more experienced researchers giving a number of general talks and workshops throughout. I found this to be an excellent opportunity to meet peers at a similar career stage, whilst also getting up-to-date on current advances in analytical chemistry.”
Dr Bhumika Shah, Department of Molecular Sciences, Macquarie University attended the 2018 Marine Microbes Gordon research conference held in conjunction with a 2-day pre-conference Gordon research seminar (GRS) organised for ECRs in the Italian town of Lucca:
"... the conference was very high quality and an indispensable way of pushing my science to an international level. The trip proved critical for setting up new collaborations, new connections and new projects."