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Victoria University wins B-HERT award for collaborative partnership with Western Health

Victoria University (VU) has won a prestigious Business/Higher Education Roundtable (B-HERT) award. The Ashley Goldsworthy Award, for Sustained Collaboration between Business and Tertiary Education acknowledges Victoria University’s ongoing relationship with Western Health (WH).

The University has had many areas of collaborative work with WH over many years, including student clinical placements, research, and work-based education programs.

For the second time Victoria University has won this B-HERT award which recognises a sustained effort by a university, business or individual to foster collaboration between the sectors resulting in significant benefits to tertiary education, business and the broader community.

Victoria University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Peter Dawkins said, “The Victoria University and Western Health partnership means that we work together to develop innovative courses in emerging areas of demand.

“It allows for two of the largest public sector institutions in Melbourne’s west to form a strong alliance to meet the challenges that arise in such a diverse area.”

The region serviced by VU and WH is markedly different from some other parts of Melbourne. The west contains areas of severe socio economic disadvantage, high disease prevalence and great cultural and ethnic diversity. It is also the fastest growing region in Australia.  

Professor Dawkins said, “The Diploma of Nursing and the Graduate Certificate in Management – Healthcare Leadership, courses delivered by VU, mean that Western Health staff are appropriately trained and qualified and continue to learn and develop.

“The Western Centre for Health Research and Education (WCHRE), another collaborative project, is a world class teaching, research and development precinct in Sunshine. The WCHRE is a three-way partnership between Western Health, Victoria University and The University of Melbourne and is the first purpose-built research and training facility for medicine and the health sciences in Melbourne’s west and hosts approximately 300 students and staff,” he said.

As well as providing an excellent education experience and location for clinical placements for nurses, paramedics and other allied health professionals, the WCHRE undertakes world-class research and incorporates the Australian Institute for Musculoskeletal Science.

The future for the VU/WH collaboration is strong and will be extended into areas outside of the College of Health and Biomedicine.

VU’s Centre for Strategic Economic Studies (CSES) is developing two research projects with WH looking at the economic value of enhanced disease prevention in areas such as chronic kidney disease and bone fracture.

VU’s College of Business is in the early stages of discussion with WH about a project mapping the patient journey and another exploring the role of social networks in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ willingness to access health services.


Media contact:

Christine White, General Manager, Public Affairs and Media

Public Affairs Department, Victoria University

03) 9919 4322; 0434 602 884; [email protected]



B-HERT Awards were established in 1998 to recognise outstanding achievement in collaboration between business and higher education in the fields of research & development and education & training. The objective of the program is to highlight at a national level the benefits of such collaboration and enhance links between industry and universities. The Awards are designed to recognise outstanding achievement in collaboration between one or more higher education institutions and one or more industry partners. In this regard industry is defined broadly as publicly and privately owned companies, associations and recognised community and welfare organisations. The underpinning interaction must be a true collaboration above and beyond what would normally be expected as part of routine activities. All parties must be actively involved and contributing, having a relationship well beyond a commercial or service delivery arrangement.

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