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2009 PhD Scholarship announced

April 2009 Event

So much has been happening with fund raising and progress in the work of the Foundation. The Chairman recently raised funds for the Foundation with the help of Citigroup, by talking to fund managers about his views on the world economy. Personal donations from the public also continued, and we look forward to furthering these efforts with our premier event in July, when Glenn Stevens talks at the joint ABE Anika Foundation event. With respect to the work of the Foundation, we have lots to report on: past scholars contributing; the new teachers scholarships for 2009; Ravenswood School for Girls; the 2009 teachers scholarships; and the Macquarie Group PhD scholarship announcement.

Past Anika Foundation scholars contributing:

Our past scholars have already begun to contribute to the community upon their return from abroad. Here is a recent quotation from one past scholar:

I am delivering full day workshops in every state and some regional areas this year on Understanding Mood Disorders. These workshops are not necessarily for teachers but for any interested person and participants tend to come from a range of backgrounds. I am also delivering Youth Depression/Positive Psychology training to staff in number of schools including Canberra Girls Grammar School, Hornsby Girls High School, Model Farms High School, James Ruse High School, Mereweather High School, The King's Prep School & The ACT Catholic Education Office, Selective Principals Association, Northern Sydney Regional Principals Association, Selective Deputies Association, Western Sydney Principals Association, Illawarra School Counselling Association and the AIS. I have also done a series on ‘Surviving the HSC’ presentations to parents of a number of schools, including Randwick Girls High School, Penrith High School, and Sydney Boys High School. It touches on supporting their children through the pressures of their final year. So, it has been a busy time! I never fail to mention your foundation and I hope this feedback provides you with a sense that the Foundation is doing good things!

Anika Foundation chosen by Ravenswood School for Girls

The Anika Foundation was chosen by Ravenswood School for Girls in early 2009 to be one of their charities for fund raising throughout the year. In early March the Chairman went to the school to talk to girls from years 7 to 12 about the work of the Foundation.

The Premier's Anika Foundation Youth Depression Awareness Scholarships

The 2009 scholarships have now been advertised and the selection process is under way.

The Macquarie Group Foundation PhD Scholarship in Adolescent Depression and Suicide

After the signing of agreements with the Macquarie Group Foundation, the Anika Foundation embarked upon a search for the right candidate. Following a national newspaper campaign late in 2008, interviews were held early in March 2009, and three top-rate candidates were shortlisted for the scholarship. The interview panel consisted of Professor Phil Mitchell, Head of Psychiatry UNSW and board member of the Anika Foundation, Professor Denis Wakefield (the Assoc. Dean for Research in the Medicine faculty), and Prof Margaret Harding, the Head of the Graduate Research School.

The scholarship was awarded to Mona Taouk from Melbourne. Mona is a very bright, articulate and energetic young woman who completed her honours year in 2008. She has developed a questionnaire for identifying depression in adolescents and a risk scale. The PhD will involve the further development of this scale. This is very important work, as there are no existing questionnaires specifically for identifying depression in adolescents.

The supervisors will be: Professor Mitchell; Dr Michael Dudley (psychiatrist and director of the adolescent service at Prince of Wales Hospital, and Chair of Suicide Prevention Australia); and Mr Dusan Hadzi-Pavlovic, a research statistician psychologist in the UNSW School of Psychiatry, who has expertise in the development of questionnaires and rating scales. Mona will be based in the Black Dog Institute.

This is a huge milestone for the Foundation: for the first time in Australia there will be research at the PhD level on the issues of adolescent depression and suicide.

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