Author: Mylan Vu

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VIEW: Young people’s needs aren’t new, they’ve been overlooked for years

Youth Advocate, Jahin Tanvir, believes the pandemic has seen young people’s needs and concerns largely overlooked, and there is a growing need to effectively engage with today’s youth so they are empowered to withstand the current challenges and uncertainty. With recent research highlighting how rarely young people are quoted in media, despite the growing volume of issues directly impacting today’s youth, Tanvir encourages young people to continue using their voices to drive the changes they want to see in society.

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VIEW: Ethnicity should be portrayed in its entirety, not just for commercial benefits

Aarti Bajaj is the creative director of groundbreaking production company, Wild Dreamer Productions. Bajaj recently rejected the words “white” and “brown” on the set of her major stage production, believing the terms to inhibit inclusiveness and diversity. She said her aim is to offer actors, dancers, singers and composers a platform to showcase their talent, without being hindered by their ethnicity. In this interview, Bajaj shares experiences from her career in production, and her views on the representation of ethnicity on screen.

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ADVICE: Amplify people with disability, don’t speak for them. We all have biases.

Digital accessibility has long-been misunderstood and overlooked as a complex and costly exercise. But high-profile court cases like the 2015 case against Coles in 2015, which has led to significant changes and new initiatives to make online experiences more accessible, demonstrate that accessibility isn’t a ‘niche’ area and in fact impacts the lives and autonomy of millions of people.

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PEOPLE: How Yemi Penn bent her own reality

As well as being an engineer, gym owner and author, Yemi Penn is a business coach and is passionate about helping others become their authentic self. In this interview, she shares why she is passionate about empowering and supporting others who are focusing on what they ‘should’ do, and how she is setting out to change the stat that one in three people are unhappy with where they are in life. She also shares her views on diversity and inclusion, and how her experiences as a woman of colour have impacted her approach to business today.

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PEOPLE: From loathing chemistry to completing a PhD in environmental geochemistry – Silvana Santomartino

Women account for less than 30% of global researcher roles and, despite an increased need in scientists’ expertise during the pandemic, female scientists have been quoted significantly less often than male scientists. In this interview, Founding Director or PSK Environmental, Silvana Santomartino, shares how she became interested in environmental science and established her own business.

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PEOPLE: Learning from and celebrating landscapes with regenerative farming

Regenerative agriculture addresses the urgent need to regenerate the health and resilience of soils and landscapes to reverse the decline of bio-systems throughout Australia and better survive the impact of climatic extremes, including helping Australian farmers bounce back from bushfires and drought. In this interview, Juanita Breen outlines how she turned a crazy dream of running a regenerative farm into a reality with Echo Valley Farms. Together with her husband and kids, Juanita operates Echo Valley Farms under what they call the “4 Goods” – good for the animals, good for the environment, good for the farmer, good for you.

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VIEWS: Stories will change minds, not another terrifying statistic

Managing and understanding climate change will be critical to the sustainability of all industries, communities, and ways of life. At the core of this challenge, is science communicators, who carry the heavy responsibility of ensuring their extensive research and studies of this field are accurately communicated to the public. In this interview, Dr Linden Ashcroft shares her experiences as a climatologist and her views on how the field is changing.

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ADVICE: Understand and embrace engineering’s human factor – Trang Pham

Trang Pham, Civil Engineer at Aurecon and Chair of Women in Engineering Queensland at Engineers Australia, has had a varied career across retail, business, public service, and engineering in the private sector. She is passionate about representing and driving further diversity across STEM industries, particularly engineering, and recognises the challenges vary from organisation to organisation.

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VIEW: Research cannot be a vehicle for reproducing disadvantage and oppression, as it has been in the past

Ableism – or discrimination against people with disabilities – has had detrimental impacts on immigration policies and immigrants, suicide rates among people with disabilities, and social acceptance and stigmatisation by society. Unfortunately, many have seen ableism have an accelerated impact during the coronavirus pandemic. In this interview, Encalada shares his views on how research can make a difference, how research has failed to help in the past, and the importance of involving people with disabilities in research programs as researchers.