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April 2007 Issue
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Fulbright scholars aim for local impact


Two University of Adelaide graduates have been awarded the prestigious Fulbright Scholarships to undertake further study at the best universities in the United States.

The scholarships, worth up to $40,000 each, are awarded for excellence in academic achievement and aim to promote mutual understanding between the US and Australia through educational exchange. The scholarships allow recipients to study and research in the US for up to 12 months.

Amy Ellks is a graduate of Adelaide's Elder Conservatorium of Music and will use her scholarship to study musical performance, majoring in classical flute, at one of the high-calibre music institutions in New York.

Rowena White graduated with degrees in Commerce and Laws (Honours) at the University of Adelaide and will use her Fulbright Scholarship to study for a Master of Laws at either Columbia University or Harvard University.

"Both Amy and Rowena represent the strong calibre of University of Adelaide graduates - students who achieve distinction in their time here at the University and who go on to achieve great things," said the Vice-Chancellor and President of the University, Professor James McWha.

"On behalf of the University, I congratulate Amy and Rowena on their Fulbright Scholarships and wish them all the best in their future study and their careers."

Amy is the recipient of the 2007 Fulbright Postgraduate Scholarship in Visual and Performing Arts sponsored by Anthony Joseph Pratt. Established in 1996 by the Pratt Foundation, the scholarship is one of few international Fulbright Scholarships for visual and performing artists.

"I want to study in the US because it provides the ideal atmosphere for a person of my musical ambition to grow and develop the deeply ingrained knowledge that a professional musician requires," Amy said.

"New York City is a culturally vibrant and stimulating city and I believe studying music there would be an ideal situation for any artistic development.

"The exchange of musical ideas and philosophies that is sure to take place during my time away would provide both Australia and America with an enriched sense of musical possibility," she said.

Rowena has a keen interest in corporate law issues and "aspects of public law concerned with the State's ability to control the freedom of the individual".

"A community is dependent on a well-functioning legal system that is able to protect the rights of its citizens," Rowena said.

"The Australian legal system is faced with similar issues to the US courts - for example, the balance between anti-terrorism laws and individual liberties, the boundaries of scientific research, and the prevention of corporate collapses, to name just a few.

"The members of the legal profession must be able to draw on cross-jurisdictional experiences and knowledge to assist in the resolution of such issues."

Currently working as an Associate to the Hon. Justice Mansfield at the Federal Court of Australia, Rowena has been exposed to a wide variety of legal disputes throughout each of the States and Territories, and hopes to broaden those experiences in the course of her LLM degree.

"The opportunity to mix with people of various legal and social backgrounds will provide a deeper insight into the social issues facing Australian and American society and how I can contribute to their improvement," she said.

Story by David Ellis

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From left: Fullbright Scholarship winners Rowena White and Amy Ellks
Photo by David Ellis

From left: Fullbright Scholarship winners Rowena White and Amy Ellks
Photo by David Ellis

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