A student from The University of Western Australia who wants to inspire school students to develop a passion for science has won the 2009 Rhodes Scholarship for Western Australia.
Dustin Stuart, 21, has taken a double major in physics and chemistry and will graduate this year with honours in physics.
While at the University of Oxford, Mr Stuart wants to study for a PhD in Laser Physics and aims to become a university researcher.
Mr Stuart is also passionate about teaching. In his high school days he was selected to compete in the International Chemistry Olympiads competition, involving around 60 countries and has been returning each year to the Australian Chemistry Olympiads summer school in Melbourne as a lecturer.
"I hope one day to start a science extension program to give kids the opportunity to discover science in the same way that has been so life-changing for me," he said.
Acting Vice-Chancellor, Winthrop Professor Bill Louden, described Mr Stuart as an excellent representative for the University and Western Australia.
"The University of Western Australia is proud to play a role in promoting the Rhodes Scholarship by encouraging the pursuit of excellence among our students," Professor Louden said.
The former Wesley College graduate joins other prominent UWA graduate Rhodes Scholars including former Premier Geoff Gallop, former Federal Attorneys-General and Queen's Counsels Peter Durack and Daryl Williams, former Labor Prime Minister Bob Hawke and former Opposition Leader Kim Beazley.
Rhodes Scholarships were created under the will of Cecil John Rhodes, the British colonial pioneer and statesman, who died in 1902. He left the greater part of his fortune to establish the scholarships to study at Oxford, with selection based on qualities of character as well as intellect.
The Rhodes Trust offers 11 Rhodes Scholarships in Australia each year, one for award in each State and three for Australia at Large.
Janine MacDonald (UWA Public Affairs) (+61 8) 6488 5563 / (+61 4) 32 637 716