This award would contribute to course fees to participate in the Oceanic Leadership in Nutrition Platform training program for ECRs. This program is a joint initiative of the Nutrition Societies of Australian, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. Participation would accelerate my involvement in this society. I am a member of the Nutrition Society of Australia and serve as a committee member for the Newcastle Local branch. I am also involved in the expansion of the societies social media reach and hope to be involved in the National level committee in the future. This course will place me with others from around the region in the same position and with the same future aims. It would open doors for committee and journal based positions which will aid in future promotions and help me become a driver of change.
The aim of the ONLP is to develop, inspire and connect a new generation of innovative leaders with foresight and broad vision of the integrative role of nutrition, who are working in the field of nutrition throughout Oceanic countries from different sectors including Academia, Research, Industry and Government and are committed to working collaboratively towards food and nutrition security for Oceania.
I am already a successful ECR, and currently hold an NHMRC ECR Fellowship. This course will help provide me with the skills I need to transition from successful ECR to successful MCR and future leader. I am already supervising several research students and contributing to a variety of undergraduate programs, and the skills gained from this training program will enhance my interactions with these students, improving outcomes for all.
The program will also help me develop strategies for NGO and Industry collaborations, which are an essential part of the future research landscape, but these collaborations need to be handled with particular care in the nutrition context due to the vested interests of the food industry. This program will help provide the skills needed to navigate these interactions.
Food and nutrition science is a traditionally female dominated field. However, the leadership positions, in both industry and academia remain dominated by men. I aim to be part of the solution to this imbalance by not only succeeding as a female leader, but also by leading and supporting other women in their own success.
I already invest a considerable proportion of my own time into science communication, mostly focusing my efforts on “nutrition mythbusting”. This work not only increases my own personal profile, but promotes UON and my field. This course would help me to improve my communication skills to improve these exposures.