Major gift supports young scientists
A significant bequest from an Adelaide family will fund prestigious new University of Adelaide research fellowships for outstanding young scientists.
Adelaide resident Hamish Ramsay has fulfilled his late stepmother's wish to help advance scientific research by pledging funds for four-year Ramsay Fellowships in the natural sciences.
The Fellowships, which will be offered annually from 2009, will be open to Australian citizens with a PhD or equivalent qualification in the natural sciences, with preference given to applicants aged 35 years or under.
Mr Ramsay said his stepmother, Mimi Ramsay, was keen to set aside some of the family inheritance for scientific research.
"Science played a large part in creating the family assets," Mr Ramsay said. "My late father Tom Ramsay was a graduate in Science from Melbourne University and his knowledge of chemistry played a part in his development of the Kiwi Polish Company (later Kiwi International)."
Kiwi International is best known for manufacturing Kiwi shoe polish, now sold in almost 180 countries around the world. The company was acquired by the American-based Sara Lee Corporation in 1984.
Mr Ramsay said his family was keen to encourage young Australian scientists working overseas to return home without disadvantaging their careers.
"I hope this Fellowship allows them to do that," he said.
The Ramsay Fellowship will eventually support four independent research fellows at the same level as the prestigious ARC Research Fellowships.
The Director of Development and Alumni, Robyn Brown, said the Ramsay family's bequest was one of the most generous ever gifted to the University in its 134-year history.
Applications for the Ramsay Fellowship will be advertised on an international scale from this month.
Story by Candy Gibson