Bundaberg Regional Council and QUT have extended their successful partnership which has already led to the launch of a Masters scholarship, youth innovation opportunities and more.
The two organisations came together in November to re-sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will see the collaborative working arrangement continue over a further five years.
The extended MoU was signed in the very apt setting of the Hinkler Hall of Aviation by Bundaberg Region Mayor Jack Dempsey and Queensland University of Technology Vice Chancellor and President Professor Margaret Shell OA.
Mayor Dempsey said the partnership would continue to foster Hinkler’s legacy of innovation with many significant achievements already marked by the collaboration.
“Collaborations such as these open up and foster opportunities not just for Council but the entire region, including large and small business, education, agriculture and sciences,” Mayor Dempsey said.
“From QUT’s integral support of Council’s Bundaberg Bioeconomy Conference series to the many school visits undertaken by Scientific Director of Cancer and Aging Research Program Derek Richard, there have been many tangible outcomes from this partnership.
“It has seen local businesses and students exposed to some of Queensland’s leading thinkers, innovators, entrepreneurs and scientists and we’ve had the opportunity to share with these people the massive potential within our region.
“Looking to the future of this partnership we will be working with Rowena Barret from QUT on establishing a local Challenger Learning Centre and participating in their Queensland Connects Program to help areas across Queensland become more resilient.”
Recently the winning Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Award team saw the benefits of the partnership first-hand when they were invited to pitch their winning concept at QUT’s Mobility 2032: Fast Tracks and Future Hacks event.
The event, attended by about 120 people, explored innovative thinking and entrepreneurial action around transport and mobility heading into the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“This was a terrific opportunity for these young people and we thank QUT for supporting the MTIA program and providing them with this invaluable experience,” Mayor Dempsey said.
Other milestones from the Bundaberg Regional Council and QUT partnership include:
- The establishment of two postgraduate research scholarships to support AgTech and biorefining research in the Bundaberg Region
- QUT professor and astrophysicist Dr. Michael Cowley keynoted Hinkler Innovation Series events, from STEM to Space.
- QUT’s ongoing support of entrepreneurialism in the Bundaberg Region through Rowena Barrett and her team through QUT Entrepreneurship, including but not exclusive to the Mayor’s Telstra Innovation Awards
- QUT Visiting Fellow Ruben Meerman and his work as the Surfing Scientist through Council’s Eat Breathe Live program