University of TasmaniaStudent stories

Student stories

A PhD at 90 years young

Joan Webb is just getting started.

In August, at the University of Tasmania’s winter graduation round in Launceston, she crossed the stage at the Albert Hall and claimed a new honorific. Mrs Webb became Dr Webb, and at only 90 years young.

Though she admits her lust for a Tudor bonnet – the floppy velvet hat Doctors of Philosophy wear at graduation ceremonies – was at least part of the motivation behind her PhD studies, Dr Webb is not content with merely a chapeau and a sense of accomplishment.

“I want to do something useful with this PhD,” she said.

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Different island, different perspective

Moving from the town of Lamongan on the Indonesia island of Java, IMAS student Muhammad Arif Rahman wasn’t really sure what to expect of Tasmania. 

“To be honest, I didn’t know that much about Tasmania because it is a small island under Australia.”

“I didn’t know things like what the weather would be like. When I arrived in winter it was very cold, it took me about a month to adjust, but I got to see my first snow. We don’t have it in Indonesia!”

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Physics star off to NASA

David Horsley has just completed his PhD in Maths and Physics. And if that isn’t achievement enough, he is soon setting off to the US to take up a job at NASA.

David will be working at the Goddard Space Flight Centre, a NASA facility just outside Washington DC.

“I will be working on the hardware and software for telescopes. I’m looking forward to it- it seems like a really interesting place. 

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Creating mystical worlds

When Karin Chan left Singapore to study a Fine Arts degree in Tasmania, her family thought she would graduate to become an art teacher. But Karin had bigger aspirations. She wanted to practice fine art on the world stage. Four years later and Karin has just returned from her first international adventure. The runways of New York Fashion Week, couture design houses in Paris and a role as Costume Designer for feature films, are firmly in her sights. 

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Helicopters, hiking and hands on experience

Furniture designers work in workshops right? Not always. Not if you’re into public seating and your client is Parks and Wildlife Tasmania. Students studying furniture design at the University of Tasmania have undergone the ultimate initiation into the world of public seating design. In a 13-week semester, they worked alongside their lecturers to interpret a brief, design, build and install 22 bench seats on Tasmania’s remote Three Capes Track.

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