Victoria Hosts Inaugural Quad Fellowship Summit

06 June 2023

Victoria has welcomed a diverse and dynamic group of scientists, technologists, engineers and mathematicians from Australia, India, Japan and the United States for the inaugural Quad Fellowship Summit.

Minister for Trade and Investment Tim Pallas welcomed the Fellows to Victoria ahead of the week-long Summit which focuses on showcasing the many ways in which science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) research and expertise can be applied to benefit communities across the globe.

The Quad Fellowship, operated and administered by Schmidt Futures, brings together up to 100 Fellows to empower the next generation of STEM leaders and build ties between the four Quad countries.

The Fellows will learn from the best and brightest in their respective fields and experience first-hand the ground-breaking work of Victorian researchers.

In December 2022, the governments of Australia, India, Japan and the United States jointly announced the Quad Fellowship’s first group of exceptional STEM graduate students from the Quad countries.

The Fellows specialise in areas including sustainable energy grids, solid-state batteries, environmental protection and restoration, 5G and 6G telecommunications, molecular, chemical, and synthetic biology, hypersonics, quantum and optical computing, cryptography and neuroimaging.

The Fellows include Victorian Leon Di Stefano who works in Maryland in genomics and precision medicine. He holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in statistics from the University of Melbourne and worked in computational biology at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute before starting a biostatistics PhD at Johns Hopkins University.

Shae Mclaughlin studied medicine at the University of Melbourne and plans to pursue a PhD in neuroscience to better understand how PTSD and other neuropsychiatric illnesses cause neurodegenerative changes in the brain and explore the potential for cell and gene therapies to reverse these changes.

The Andrews Labor Government’s support of the Quad Fellowship further advances Victoria’s world-class reputation for research excellence, expanding our global networks and helping our economy compete in a global field that is underpinned by research and innovation.

Melbourne's Biomedical Precinct is Australia’s, and one of the world’s, leading biomedical centres. The precinct delivers outstanding healthcare, education and world-class research as home to the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and Peter Doherty Institute.

Quote attributable to Minister for Trade and Investment Tim Pallas

“We’re delighted to host the Quad Fellowship Summit to Melbourne – it underscores the standing of Victoria as a global tech, research and innovation leader.”

Quote attributable to Director of the Quad Fellowship Helen Zhang

“This Summit will not only expose Fellows to Australia’s rich culture and history, it will engage in deep conversation about the intersection of STEM, public policyand social impact in Australia, among the four Quad countries, and across the globe.”

Reviewed 06 June 2023

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