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 Miss Olivia Brown

Degree: Bachelor of Philosophy (Science) (Hons) Theoretical Physics and Pure Mathematics
Institution: Australian National University
In Residence: Burgmann College
Career Goal: To become a Professor of Mathematical Physics or Theoretical Physics, then Head of Faculty (Science) or Vice Chancellor at a leading public, research-oriented university.
Education History: Lauriston Girls’ School, Armadale VIC. ANU, Canberra ACT

Miss Olivia Brown (she prefers Ollie) is originally from Melbourne however she spent time during her formative years in Adelaide, Melbourne and London.

She attended the Lauriston Girls’ School and last year completed her first year at the Australian National University. By any measure Miss Ollie Brown is an outstanding student. She has highly developed interpersonal and communication skills, is creative, motivated and organised. Ollie has strong leadership skills and a well-defined community spirit.

Ollie’s passion for research stems from a love of immersing herself in a specific, sometimes not well understood issue and learning all she can about it. Her love of physics began with a childhood obsession with all things outer space and was reinforced when she attended the Oxford University Tradition Summer School in 2014.

She was placed in an accelerated tutorial at the Summer School where she studied mathematical physics. At the program’s completion, the group read a university-level physics paper as their final exam. Ollie was awarded the Class Prize at the conclusion of her time in Oxford. She was a stand out student amongst outstanding students. In her free time at Oxford, she attended many lectures in the physics school. This experienced encouraged her to actively pursue a career in research.

In her final years at Lauriston Girls’ School, Ollie undertook International Baccalaureate (IB) studies, focusing on Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics. During her Year 12 in 2015, she travelled to the University of Melbourne during after school hours to study first-year university physics. Ollie concurrently attained an ATAR of 99.85 and straight High Distinctions in her university subjects.

In 2015 Ollie also received full School Colours and the Lauriston IB All-Rounder Award for her work as Captain of Cricket and as Pastoral Care Representative.

In 2016 she was appointed to Team Lead a motion-simulator construction project under the auspices of the ANU Research School of Physics and Engineering.

This challenging but intensely rewarding role has given her an insight into research procedures such as writing grant proposals and learning how to develop website code for marketing purposes. Also with the ANU Department of Quantum Science she is designing and constructing an element of laser apparatus using 3D printing technology. Both the motion simulator project and her coursework research have served to excite her more about academia.

It is Ollie’s intention to continue from her undergraduate studies into a PhD in Theoretical Physics. Her dream job is to become a Professor of Mathematical Physics or of Theoretical Physics and to eventually take on administrative roles such as Head of Faculty (Science) or Vice Chancellor at a leading public, research-oriented university.

She has a broad range of interests from playing sport to reading and writing about modern history. In 2014 Ollie was awarded the Simpson Prize, a national history essay writing competition. Her research essay on the historical accuracy and contemporary relevance of the ANZAC Legend was judged the best in Victoria and as a result she travelled to Gallipoli to speak at the ANZAC Day Dawn Service.

Ollie has been very active in Burgmann College community. Last year she took on a leadership position as the First-year Sports Captain. This year she has been elected to the role of Sports Representative and will serve on the Interhall Sports Organisation (ISO). She has been elected to an Executive Committee position as ISO Treasurer. Ollie also participates in Arts events and has sat on two event committees as well as being a member of the Burgmann Residents’ Association committee.

Ollie Brown is passionate about improving the under-representation of women in science by better communicating scientific ideas to engage young girls and women. This is motivated by her keen interest in how public policy can influence the perception of science by the broader community and how science communication can be improved to make new innovation and development more accessible to the general public.

Ollie Brown is destined to make a significant difference to science in this country and around the world. She is a deserved winner of a C.A.S. Hawker Scholarship.