A Message from the Dean of Arts

Since the last edition there have been many exciting developments in the Faculty of Arts and this edition of ARTiculation brings you some of the key highlights.

In May we held our annual Faculty of Arts Awards Ceremony which recognised the top performing students named to the Dean's Honours List for 2013. This year we had a total of 146 students recognised for their academic excellence and again, I would like to extend my congratulations to such an outstanding cohort.

The Awards Ceremony not only celebrates the academic excellence of our students, but also highlights a selection of the Faculty's 150 prizes and scholarships.  It is often the generosity of our donors who provide these students with real opportunities to excel, with around 45 students this year given the opportunity to receive their award at the Ceremony and in some cases meet their donors in person and say thank you. And we say thank you to each and every one of our donors for their ongoing support.

This year we also celebrated the achievements of our talented alumni with five Faculty Alumni Awards presented. The Faculty's Rising Star Award for Young Alumni recognised the contributions of Ms Jenny Taing and Dr Toby Ord, and you can read Jenny's story in this edition. We also honoured esteemed alumnus Professor Peter McPhee AM for his outstanding contribution to the Faculty and University, Dr Helen Szoke, CEO of Oxfam for her Leadership in the not-for-profit sector and writer Mr Alex Miller received the prestigious Faculty of Arts Lifetime Achievement Award. It was a wonderful night and thanks to all those who were able to attend.

The Faculty of Arts is an active partner on a range of cultural initiatives, with our research and teaching generating new and exciting opportunities for engagement. This year the Faculty of Arts has partnered with the Melbourne International Film Festival, the Melbourne Writers Festival, and Next Wave Festival and has led the University's Learning Partnership on the National Gallery of Victoria's Winter Masterpiece exhibition, Italian Masterpieces from Spain's Royal Court, Museo del Prado.  This Learning Partnership has this year enabled our staff, students and alumni to discover the NGV in new ways and has initiated new internship and career development opportunities for our graduate students. Through Melbourne Masterclasses, the Faculty's flagship community education series, we have been able to offer a range of learning opportunities and exclusive events and I would encourage you to keep a close eye on the website and sign-up for updates. These relationships are forged through our many research and teaching connections and inform our professional masters and short course offerings, which you can read about within.

Finally, June saw the first anniversary of the establishment of the Melbourne School of Government, a three-Faculty initiative of the University of Melbourne, with Arts as the custodial Faculty. The School of Government has had an extremely eventful year, with staff and students actively engaged with the rapidly evolving political landscape in Australia. The School provides its students with programs informed by the School's industry-led research agenda and connections with government nationally and internationally, and has been an active agent in the public sphere with Election Watch and contributions to The Conversation highlighting the School as a critical touchstone for politics in this country. I would encourage you all to keep in touch with the School of Government's activities as it enters its second year and continues to go from strength to strength.

I hope you enjoy this edition and I look forward to bringing you more news from the Faculty in August.