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Merit Scholars Workshop Weekend

In 2010, Macquarie University launched the Aspiring Professionals Program for Merit Scholars. In the years following, the program has grown to involve prominent members of both academia and industry and aims to offer extra guidance to our high achieving students throughout their degree.

First year students with an ATAR of 98.5 or above who enrol at Macquarie are invited to join this prestigious program, which is delivered through a series of workshops.  

Our first workshop for 2012 was held on Friday 27th July and Sunday 29th July. 32 of our best and brightest students had the chance to network with other first year’s across the University, as well as academics and industry professionals.

The theme for the first year workshop weekend was "self" where students were mentored in areas of:

  • developing self-awareness
  • dealing with conflict
  • and leadership

Students were welcomed by Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Provost), Professor Judyth Sachs, who offered words of encouragement and support, calling them leaders of the future.

Robyn Clark, Managing Director of Peak Performance Learning Services and Dr. David Paul, Director of ATTWISE (Advisor to the Wise), facilitated the weekend and led students through various activities, group and individual challenges and games in order for them to gain a greater understanding of "self."

Robyn and David work together to provide seminars, programs, courses and conferences to companies, organisations and corporations. They have blended skills of adult learning, business consulting, worked at senior levels within organisations and have held senior jobs in a variety of companies.

Throughout the weekend activities, students were asked to reflect on:

  • challenges they were facing
  • think about leadership and how this inspires action
  • describe lessons learnt in relation to communication and problem solving.

Guest Speaker Andrew Sloan, a former merit scholar who is now an Enterprise Business Representative for Salesforce. He spoke to the students about his experience transitioning from university to the workforce and the importance of students developing their "soft skills" in the areas of networking and rapport building.

Professor Bob Miller, Adjunct Professor in the Department of Marketing and Management spoke to students about the 5 why’s. He encouraged students to always challenge themselves and to never stop asking “why.”

After 2 days of challenging activities, students reflected on all that they had learnt with much of the feedback centred on how inspiring the weekend was to their future learning!
Photography - Iain Brew


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