Honour for Lime Network Project

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Melbourne School of  Population Health’s LIME Network Project won the 2011 inaugural Rio Tinto Award  for Excellence and Innovation in Indigenous Higher Education.
 
LIME (Leaders in Indigenous Medical Education) is hosted by  the Onemda VicHealth  Koori Health Unit, within the Centre for Health and Society and is a project of  Medical Deans Australia and New Zealand Inc.

This University-wide  award recognises the LIME Network’s many achievements in supporting greater  recruitment and retention of Indigenous medical students, and the development  of best practice in Indigenous health curricula within medical schools.

The award was sponsored by Rio Tinto Australia in its  role as the foundation corporate partner of Murrup Barak Melbourne Institute for Indigenous Development, at the  University of Melbourne.
 
The corporate  partnership, launched in November 2010 at the Narrm Oration, is  laying pathways of opportunity  that reach from Murrup Barak into Australia’s most remote communities through  such activities as professional placements for graduate students and research  into Rio Tinto’s on-site knowledge needs.
 
Murrup Barak has strong  links with the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health. The Institute’s Director,  Professor Ian Anderson, achieved a distinguished career within the School as a  former Director of the Centre for Health and Society and Onemda. His efforts  contributed to the School establishing one of the largest concentrations of Indigenous staff  and Indigenous research projects at the University.

Ellen Day, Manager of  Partnerships and Development for Murrup Barak, says Murrup Barak’s partnership  with Rio Tinto Australia is mutually beneficial in business terms. “As a  business that operates in remote Australia, Rio Tinto has a very strong  motivation for increasing the numbers of qualified indigenous people among its  employees and for investing in the viability of the communities in which it  works.” she says. “And the University sees the partnership as supporting its  core teaching and learning goals by increasing both the number of indigenous  graduates and graduates who are skilled at working with indigenous communities  and by enabling the University to reward staff who are striving for excellence  in Indigenous teaching and learning.”

Rio Tinto’s sponsorship of the annual Narrm Oration, which profiles  leading international indigenous thinkers, is also an important aspect of the  partnership program, as is the new Rio Tinto Award, won by the LIME Network.
 
LIME’s Program Manager, Margo Collins, says,  “Traditionally, medical schools have tended to work in isolation. The LIME  Network Project shows unique leadership in that it actively promotes,  encourages and engages medical schools in supporting and collaborating with  each other to improve the teaching and learning of Indigenous health.”
 
Among the achievements of LIME and its predecessor  projects, Ms Collins cites the Critical Reflection Tool, an internal quality review tool designed to assist medical  schools to implement, monitor and sustain the nationally agreed Indigenous  Health Curriculum Framework. The LIME Network website, newsletter and biennial conference  were among the resources and activities it had developed.