MDHS Indigenous Postdoctoral Fellows

The MDHS Indigenous Postdoctoral Fellowship aims to support the next generation of Indigenous academics.

The Faculty and its Schools congratulate the inaugural cohort:

Sharon Atkinson-Briggs

Sharon Atkinson-Briggs, PhD Candidate at the Melbourne Medical School

Sharon is a Yorta Yorta woman who has strong connections to the Indigenous community in Shepparton and surrounding areas. She is an expert in Indigenous primary healthcare, particularly in chronic disease, as a result of her extensive work in regional and remote settings. Sharon hopes the Fellowship will provide opportunities to build on a long-term vision to develop an Indigenous healthcare professional-led chronic disease/diabetes management service.

Karyn Ferguson

Karyn Ferguson, PhD Candidate at the Melbourne Medical School

Karyn is a Yorta Yorta woman whose research interests are Aboriginal maternal, infant and child health, and the application of population data linkage, traditional geo-spatial boundaries and sovereignty practices to strengthen Aboriginal community data governance. The Fellowship will enable Karyn to build significantly on her PhD research, which focused on maternal and infant data, to include data on children.

Tod Fernando image

Todd Fernando, PhD Candidate at the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health

Todd Fernando, a descendant of the Kalarie peoples of the Wiradjuri nation, is a medical anthropologist and research scholar focusing on Indigenous LGBTIQA+ health. The Fellowship will allow Todd to continue a career in research and teaching of Indigenous health and wellbeing, frameworks of cultural safety, anthropologies of gender and sexuality, inclusive policy design, theories of racial literacy, and philosophies of change.

'Congratulations to the successful Fellows, who will now be supported to achieve their research and academic goals through these three-year appointments,' said Professor John Prins, Head of the Melbourne Medical School.

'This inaugural cohort, together with future cohorts, will contribute to building a strong scholarly community of Indigenous academics within our Faculty.'

'It is my hope that these fellowships will allow the next generation of Indigenous scholars to launch their academic careers post-PhD and see them firmly establish a path of research,' said Professor Nancy Baxter, Head of the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health.

The Indigenous PhD candidates within our Faculty are a source of great pride for us, and we are thrilled that this important initiative is jointly supported by our Schools.

Find out more about the initiative here.