2019 Aurora Fellows

December 6, 2019


As part of our continued support of Indigenous postgraduate scholars through our partnership with the Aurora Education Foundation, we are delighted to announce that we helped send four more highly accomplished Indigenous women on the 2019 Aurora International Study Tour. They are Candice Bowditch, Rhianna Brickle, Grace Gillard and Annaliese McCarthy.


Candice Bowditch

A Computer Scientist and early career cyber security professional, Candice is from Darwin, Northern Territory. She is Larrakia on her father’s side and Arabunna on her mother’s side. Candice graduated from RMIT University with a Bachelor of Computer Science in 2018. She plans to develop her expertise further through a Masters and PhD. She was a 2016 Google Anita Borg Scholar (awarded to outstanding female scholars in the field of computer science) and a 2016-2018 AEIF-BHP Billiton Scholar (awarded to outstanding Indigenous students undertaking engineering and other STEM-related degrees). Candice has experience working in cyber security consulting with defence, government and critical infrastructure. She also volunteers in the social impact and public policy space through the Global Shapers Community, which is an initiative of the World Economic Forum. Candice strongly believes in the potential of technology to empower historically disadvantaged individuals and communities.


Rhianna Brickle

Rhianna is a proud Palawa woman, who grew up in the GunaiKurnai community in East Gippsland, Victoria. Rhianna seeks to support a better future for Aboriginal children through her work. She recently started her Master of Applied Science (Health) on Aboriginal child play at Deakin University, having already completed a Graduate Diploma of Therapeutic Child Play at Deakin and a Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood) at the University of Tasmania. Rhianna has eight years’ experience working in early childhood education and currently works as a Kindergarten Teacher and a Research Assistant in Languages and Linguistics at the University of Melbourne. Ultimately, she hopes to further her Masters research through a PhD in the areas of Child Development and Play Therapy.


Grace Gillard

Grace is an Anaiwan woman in the final year of her Bachelor of Science, majoring in Zoology at the University of New England. In 2018 she was awarded the Oorala Merit Prize in the Faculty of Science, Agriculture, Business and Law. Grace also plays violin and piano and was a member of the 2017 Tamworth Musical Society Orchestra. Grace is interested in pursuing a career as a conservation biologist with a zoological focus, aiming to make a positive contribution to local and global communities through her work.


Annaliese McCarthy

Annaliese is an Aboriginal woman with Gadigal heritage in her third year of a Bachelor of Design (Honours) in Architecture at Queensland University Technology (‘QUT’). Annaliese has worked for Lendlease and GHD Woodhouse in Brisbane, and made the QUT Deans Honour List in 2018 due to her strong academic record. After completing her Honours degree, Annaliese plans to undertake a Masters in Architecture overseas where she hopes to put Aboriginal design on the map.


As mentioned back in the June newsletter, Kasarina Mann, a 2018 Katrina Dawson Aurora Foundation Fellow, started her Master of Science in Clinical Embryology at Oxford University on a Charlie Perkins scholarship this year. In addition, two other 2018 Katrina Dawson Aurora Foundation Fellows, Sasha Purcell and Gemma Tierney, have been awarded Fulbright scholarships! Congratulations Sasha and Gemma! We look forward to updating you on where, and what, they are studying in the next newsletter.


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