Centre Staff

The NCSEHE is home to a diverse group of researchers, students and professional staff

Prof. Sue Trinidad

Director and Program Leader

Prior to becoming the NCSEHE Director, Professor Sue Trinidad was Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor and Dean of Teaching and Learning in the Faculty of Humanities at Curtin University during 2007-12. Her role included overseeing the academic programs and leading the Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP) for a large faculty with many Low SES, Indigenous and regional students. Professor Trinidad is an established scholar and researcher in the area of higher education and currently leads the NCSEHE team on numerous research projects that are building the evidence base in this important area of student equity in higher education in Australia.

Prof. John Phillimore

Research Program Leader

Professor John Phillimore has been the Executive Director of the John Curtin Institute of Public Policy (JCIPP) at Curtin University since 2007. John has been NCSEHE Program Leader for Program 2 — Equity Policy and Research Program since the NCSEHE’s establishment at Curtin, where he oversees the Centre’s Research Grants Program. He is also the leader of the Curtin Future of Work Institute’s ‘Public Policy in a Digital Age’ research program. For the past 30 years, he has worked either as an academic or as a senior adviser in the Western Australian Government. He has conducted research and written on a wide array of public policy issues, including intergovernmental relations, higher education, public sector management, the Australian welfare state, regional policy, and Australian politics.

Dr Paul Koshy

Research Fellow

Paul Koshy is a Research Fellow at the NCSEHE. His work focuses on higher education participation and outcomes in Australia. He also has responsibility for the Student Equity Data Program, which produces the Equity Student Participation Briefing Note and Student Equity Data Website. Paul’s recent research output has included work on geographical measures of socioeconomic status and their use in Australian higher education policy, an examination of parental educational aspirations for their children, and an analysis of the effect of institutional status on graduate outcomes.

Dr Lyn Vernon

Research Fellow

Prior to her current appointment, Lyn worked as Project Manager for a Murdoch program which aims to widen access and improve participation in higher education. Her Doctor of Philosophy is in Psychology leading to research interests in the developmental implications of using technology at night. Lyn has a Bachelor of Science from UWA and Diploma in Education from Edith Cowan University. She has taught for the Department of Education for over 20 years, and while teaching completed her Graduate Diploma in Psychology at Charles Sturt University. In 2009 Lyn completed her Honours in Psychology at Murdoch University, and has also tutored at Murdoch in program evaluation.

Prof. Sally Kift

Visiting Professorial Fellow

Sally Kift PFHEA has been Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) at James Cook University (2012-2017) and is President of the Australian Learning and Teaching Fellows (ALTF). Prior to commencing at JCU in 2012, Sally was a Professor of Law at QUT, where she has served as Law Faculty Assistant Dean, Teaching & Learning (2001-2006) and QUT’s foundational Director, First Year Experience (2006-2007). Sally received a National Teaching Award (AAUT) in 2003 and in 2006 was awarded one of three inaugural Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) Senior Fellowships. In 2007, Sally led a Project Team to the award of a further ALTC National Teaching Award for the Law Faculty’s Assessment and Feedback practices. In 2009, she was appointed an ALTC Discipline Scholar in Law. In 2017, she became a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Prof. Sarah O'Shea

2019 Research Fellow

Having spent over two decades teaching and researching in the higher education field, Professor Sarah O’Shea is regarded as an expert in educational equity. Her research ($AUD 2million+) advances understanding about how underrepresented student cohorts enact success within university, manage competing identities and negotiate aspirations for self and others. She is currently leading an ARC Discovery Project exploring the persistence behaviours of First-in-Family students and is working on a Research Fellowship with the NCSEHE, examining post-graduation employment opportunities for equity students.

Prof. James Smith

Adjunct Professorial Fellow

James Smith is a Father Frank Flynn Fellow at Menzies School of Health Research, focusing on alcohol and other drugs harm minimisation. He was a 2017 NCSEHE Equity Fellow, hosted through Charles Darwin University (CDU), and was the Co-Lead of the Indigenous Leadership Research and Evaluation Network and Program Manager for the Whole of Community Engagement initiative at CDU. James has held senior strategic roles spanning health and education settings across the Northern Territory and South Australia.

A/Prof. Cathy Stone

Adjunct Fellow

Dr Cathy Stone is a Conjoint Associate Professor in Social Work with the University of Newcastle, Australia. She was a 2016 Equity Fellow and 2017/18 Visiting Fellow with the NCSEHE, and has a longstanding interest in, and commitment to, student equity, widening participation and improving the student experience for increasingly diverse university student cohorts. She has worked for many years in developing and managing student support and success programs in both on-campus and online university environments, as well as researching ways these can be improved. Cathy's key research interests and publications focus particularly on improving the experiences of mature age, First-in-Family and online students.

Mr Matt Brett

Adjunct Fellow

Matt Brett is Director of Academic Governance and Standards at Deakin University. He was a 2017 Equity Fellow and is now an Adjunct Fellow with the NCSEHE. Both Matt’s parents were Deaf giving him lifelong experience of disability and catalysing over two decades of commitment to equity in higher education. Notable achievements include an Australian Learning and Teaching Citation for outstanding contributions to student learning and co-authorship of NCSEHE’s The Best Chance For All.

Ms Louise Pollard

Adjunct Fellow

Louise Pollard is the Director (Admissions and Student Services) at The University of Notre Dame Australia (Fremantle Campus), having recently completed a Fellowship through the NCSEHE. Prior to this she was the Manager of Aspire UWA, a nationally recognised widening participation program at The University of Western Australia and has over 18 years' experience in developing, implementing and reviewing a range of education and community development projects in a range of contexts in Australia and internationally.

Dr Nicole Crawford

2019/20 Equity Fellow

Dr Nicole Crawford is a lecturer in Pre-degree Programs at the University of Tasmania. She is a passionate educator and the recipient of several national research grants. She leads UTAS’s Social Inclusion CoP and is the facilitator of the National Association of Enabling Educators of Australia (NAEEA) Special Interest Group on Mental Health. Nicole’s research interests include enabling education; student and staff wellbeing; and equity and inclusion in Higher Education.

Dr Katelyn Barney

2019/20 Equity Fellow

Katelyn Barney is a Senior Lecturer in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit at The University of Queensland. Her research focuses on facilitating pathways for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students into and through higher education and collaborative research with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women who perform contemporary music. She has published across these areas, co-edited a number of Special Issues of journals, and also edited the books Collaborative Ethnomusicology: New Approaches to Music Research between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians and Musical Islands: Exploring Connections between Music, Place and Research. She is also an Australian Learning and Teaching Fellow and Managing Editor of The Australian Journal of Indigenous Education.

Mr Paul Farnhill

Policy Analyst

Paul is an Economist and Policy Analyst with wide experience in policy issues in government and industry. Paul worked for the Financial Times newspaper in London before joining the Western Australian Government in a range of roles in economic development and policy analysis. He has also been a political speech writer and advisor to Ministers and Premiers.

Mr Don Boyd

Doctoral Student

Don has extensive experience in school education with a focus on regional and remote delivery, in particular policy development associated with equity issues, distance education and the use of ICT to overcome geographic disadvantage. Don’s research interests include the use of technology as a means of building teacher and school leadership capacity in non-metropolitan locations, attracting and retaining quality teachers to country schools, and access and participation by regional and remote residents in higher education.

Mr Ian Cunninghame

Research Assistant

Ian has a Masters degree majoring in professional writing and publishing and a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Internet Communications. He is currently assisting the NCSEHE with the cataloguing of its past and present research to a referencing database, and assisting in gathering research relating to social mobility through higher education.

Ms Rebecca McKenzie

Administrative Assistant

Rebecca has many years of administrative experience and more than 10 years operational and project management experience in Western Australia’s Agriculture/ Biosecurity public sector working on a nationally significant pest incursion project. Rebecca is currently assisting the centre in various administrative and research related activities including the centre's valuable project work in areas such as Equity Scholarships, Fellowships and the Equity Performance Framework in Australian Higher Education project.

Ms Nina Thomas

Media and Communications Officer

Prior to her current position, Nina worked as Web Editor for 'Westerly' Magazine, based at the University of Western Australia, and as Brand and Marketing Manager for Challenger Veterinary Hospital, Western Australia. Alongside her role in media and communications, Nina is responsible for managing the production of the NCSEHE's print and online publications, as well as Centre events and projects. She has a degree in Professional Writing and Publishing from Curtin University.

Ms Sian Hodgson

Graphic Designer

Sian is currently completing her Masters in Marketing after studying a Bachelor of Arts in Creative Advertising and Graphic Design. Prior to her position with the Centre she was responsible for creating material for two of Perth Legacy’s donation appeal campaigns. She assists in the production of numerous print and online publications produced by the Centre annually.