BioMedVic kicked off its flagship education and training program, Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) at the Welcome Forum on 24 February held at the Melbourne Town Hall. The Portico Room overlooking a bustling Swanston St was the perfect location for current UROP scholars and research-interested undergraduate students to mingle with research supervisors from industry, research institutes, hospitals and universities from across Victoria.
Victorian undergraduates are the big winners from this dynamic program that helps them get paid work, and experience, as a researcher at one of the many research organisations in the state. Since 2004, the program – which provides an income for 6-18 months – has seen more than 560 scholars take part. BioMedVic manages two rounds of student intakes a year and proudly celebrated the opening of their 25th round of student placements at the 2016 Welcome Forum.
An enthusiastic panel of UROP scholar alumni fielded questions from the audience about their experiences and achievements. They provided great insights into what incoming and prospective UROP scholars may expect to tackle during their placements. It was definitely a highlight to hear that many UROP alumni are now pursuing research careers in industry or academia.
BioMedVic’s Education and Engagement Manager, Dr Udani Ratnayake, noted that “UROP is not short of applications from exceptional and highly capable undergraduate students seeking real-life experience in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medical research (STEMM)”. The UROP office was excited by the prospect of custom matching another cohort of outstanding students with stimulating and challenging research projects when the first 2016 round of UROP opens on March 7”.
After the exciting news about our partnership with CSL, the formal proceedings concluded with the most important part of the afternoon, congratulating and welcoming the 25th round of UROP Scholars into the UROP community! Informal networking followed with new students mingling with UROP scholars, alumni, supervisors and representatives from CSL and BioMedVic while enjoying some food and drinks.