Student Award Recipients

The 2016 VALA Student Award for a student at Monash University goes to Steven Graham.

Steven Graham 200Steven was an outstanding student, having completed the Graduate Diploma in Information and Knowledge Management at Monash University’s Faculty of Information Technology, with High Distinctions in all units.  He was the recipient of the Dean’s Achievement Award (Postgraduate), in recognition of outstanding academic achievement in 2015, and the Knowledge Management Excellence Award, for achieving the highest result in the Faculty in a knowledge management unit in 2015.  

Steven's other qualifications include a Bachelor of Arts (with first class honours in Politics) at La Trobe University and a Bachelor of Creative Arts at the University of Melbourne.  

Steven is currently working as a Casual Library Advisor (Specialist) at the Deakin University Library in Burwood, and also doing some part-time weekend work as a Customer Engagement Shift Leader at Yarra Libraries in Fitzroy.

Congratulations, Steven, and good luck!

The 2016 VALA Student Award for a student at RMIT goes to Kate Monypenny.

Kate Monypenny

Kate will graduate from the Master of Information Management in December 2016, achieving high distinctions in all subjects. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Melbourne, majoring in English Literary Studies and Theatre Studies. As her previous experience in libraries was largely humanities-based, Kate found the technology-related courses at RMIT a fascinating insight into the realities and possibilities of IT in libraries. She particularly enjoyed learning about coding and cataloguing, finding the acquisition of the new languages challenging and stimulating. Kate was also the 2016 recipient of the Enterprise Knowledge award for excellence in the course 'The Professional Experience' after undertaking an industry placement at the British Library.

Kate completed her Information Management studies alongside working for multiple public libraries, currently holding the position of Information Services Librarian at Stonnington Library and Information Service. Passionate about the promotion of early literacy, Kate began her library career as a Children's Library Officer - devising and delivering Storytimes, Babytimes and parent education sessions - and continues to maintain an interest in all kinds of youth programming. In her current role, aside from providing frontline customer assistance and contributing to collection maintenance, Kate develops and delivers technology education for adults and STEM programming for children and youth. As part of her studies she investigated the potential use and impact of digital storytelling technologies for teenager and community engagement, and is now keen to incorporate more technology-based programs into her work. Approaching the end of her degree, Kate looks forward to applying the resulting skills and knowledge to contribute to digital literacy development in the wider community.

Congratulations, Kate, and good luck!

The 2015 VALA Student Award for a student at Monash University goes to Viviane Hessami.

Viviane HessamiViviane Hessami holds degrees in History and Asian Studies and a PhD in Political Science from Monash University. She achieved outstanding results in the Postgraduate Diploma in Information and Knowledge Management at Monash University, receiving the highest marks in all the Library and Archives subjects and being awarded a Dean’s Achievement Award for her overall performance. She is also the recipient of the Australian Society of Archivists Margaret Jennings Award for the top student in an Archive course in Australia and the Mander Jones Award for the best student paper for her research essay on the Recordkeeping Issues Arising from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Viviane thoroughly enjoyed completing her Library professional placement at VicHealth during which she remodelled the way physical library resources were presented and she assessed VicHealth’s staff information needs and information access preferences in order to inform the development of a new Information Management portal. She is currently working at Monash University as a Teaching Associate and a Research Assistant in the Centre for Community and Social Informatics, collaborating on projects to facilitate access to Archives and Records and in the area of Community Informatics. She is also developing the website of the Records Continuum Research Group.


Congratulations, Viviane, and good luck!

The 2015 VALA Student Award for a student at RMIT goes to Karen Seligman.

Karen SeligmanKaren graduated from the University of Melbourne with undergraduate qualifications in both science and law. She worked in management consulting and as an industrial chemist before deciding to undertake the Master of Information Management at RMIT University. Karen pursued a wide range of interests while studying for her masters degree and has been academically successful across the board. However, Karen believes that her training in science particularly enhanced her understanding of the technology subjects and she found topics such as coding, database and thesauri construction, and classification to be elegant and intellectually stimulating. Her extremely high marks in the related subjects have resulted in her nomination for this award. Karen has also been involved with singing for and organising Off the Shelf, a Melbourne-based librarian’s choir, and she is currently working as a freelance blogger for the Booko Blog, writing on book- and library-oriented themes, and as a volunteer in the library at Brunswick South West Primary School.


Congratulations, Karen, and good luck!

The 2014 VALA Student Award for a student at Monash University goes to Greg Rolan.

Ailie SmithFollowing a 30-year career in IT, Greg returned to Monash to study community informatics and qualified as a librarian. He then went on to complete his Master of Business information Systems (Honours) degree in the archives stream. During this time, Greg was a recipient of the Dean’s Achievement Award for postgraduate study, the Australian Society of Archivists Mander Jones award for the ‘best academic work on archives or recordkeeping produced by a student in any Australian university course’, and the Penny Fisher Memorial Prize for the ‘most outstanding masters thesis in archives and records’. Greg also participated in research regarding the Australian Government’s Digital Hub programme in a public library setting, and presented the resulting paper at VALA 2014.

Greg is now a doctoral candidate, investigating archival systems interoperability. His research comprises design-science investigations of systems interoperability; conceptual modelling in information informatics; metadata standards-setting; and organisational/social factors in information systems design and implementation. As well as studying, Greg works as a Teaching Associate and Research Assistant at Monash University in the Faculty of Information Technology in the Centre for Organisational and Community Informatics.


Congratulations, Greg, and good luck!

Student Awards

Contact Us

PO Box 443,
Warrandyte Victoria 3113

icon Contact VALA via . 

icon +61 3 9844 2933


Go to top