Message from the Dean, 8 September 2020

While we enjoyed spectacular spring weather this Father's Day weekend, we also got the news that the Victorian lockdown is being extended. Although it is sobering, it was a decision based on data. The modelling was provided by Professor Tony Blakely and his group at the Population Interventions Unit in our School of Population and Global Health.

In this week's video message I announce the winners of the Faculty wellbeing competition. Thank you to all who contributed their strategies. I also cover:

  • Two recent studies that bode well for a COVID vaccine, one in Iceland showing over 90% of people had what looked like protective antibodies four months after an infection, and another showing similarly high percentages within an elderly population in England
  • A large survey of university students in the US had some worrying findings about the high rates of depression and anxiety being experienced by students
  • R U OK? Day is approaching this Thursday and our Deputy Dean, Professor Jane Gunn, along with Dr Nicholas Van Dam from the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, will host a webinar exploring mindfulness and how to look out for signs our friends, family and colleagues might be struggling in the virtual context
  • Clinician-scientist Associate Professor Luke Burchill, who is based at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, has worked with clinicians, researchers, mental health experts and creatives to develop the RMHive app for frontline heath workers – you can watch a selection of the 40 short films that will help workers feel connected, informed and supported during the pandemic
  • This Thursday Professor Marcia Langton AO is part of a panel discussion convened for National Social Sciences Week, to consider how the Black Lives Matter movement can translate to long-lasting, meaningful change at the University – you can register here

Please stay up to date with the latest information on the University's COVID-19 response by regularly checking the dedicated page.

Stay safe and keep well.

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