ACU graduate Daniel Colquhoun has been awarded the 2013 Bob and Margaret Frater Travel Scholarship.
Scholarship founders Bob and Margaret Frater presented Daniel with the award, worth $10,000, at Australian Catholic University’s North Sydney campus.
The scholarship recognises and rewards teachers within Catholic primary schools who display leadership qualities and commitment and who will contribute to the continuing development and enhancement of the school system through participation in an international experience.
A kindergarten teacher at St Declan’s Catholic Primary School in Penshurst, Daniel is also involved in an "aspiring leaders" program run by the Eastern Region CEO and is involved in the Early Years Project. A technological enthusiast, he integrates music and technology in his classwork, which not only involves the children, but also engages hundreds of teachers as he shares his work via social media. He has written and recorded more than 15 songs as classroom aides for encouraging children to write which he then uploads to YouTube and Google + where they are viewed by children, parents and teachers all over the world.
Daniel intends to use the proceeds of the scholarship to attend an international conference for kindergarten teachers in the US next year and to use the knowledge and expertise he acquires to inform his own teaching and to share with his network of teachers throughout the Catholic education system and beyond.
Margaret Frater spoke of the background to the scholarship.
"We are delighted to have Daniel as our ninth recipient. Bob and I remember the value of the first work-based overseas experiences we had had in the early stages of our careers and the value that came from seeing our work in an international context. It was this and my involvement helping at the local primary school that inspired the establishment of the Scholarship."
Daniel gained his Bachelor of Education (Primary) and Postgraduate Certificate in Education at ACU’s Strathfield campus, where he flourished as a student with a distinction average.
Professor Anne Cummins said she was delighted that Daniel had received the Frater Scholarship. "Daniel is a natural teacher and has demonstrated his capacity to inspire children to learn through applying his research to develop entertaining and effective teaching methods. His ability to engage students to achieve the best results, to share his methods with other teachers, and to be striving to extend his own experience suggest his appreciation of the value of developing learning at all levels."
The Frater scholarship is open to students or graduates of ACU – or one of its predecessor colleges – and who are working in the teaching profession in a Catholic primary school in NSW or the ACT. Applicants must show a demonstrated commitment to using his or her qualifications to work for the betterment of the educational community.