Alumni Updates

Georgina Duguid – Structural design engineer

2018 Playford Trust Honours Scholarship

I received the Playford Trust Scholarship for my Honours research into Halloysite clay as a microfiller in geopolymer and fly-ash-based concrete. The focus of my research was to show how we can improve the structural qualities of concrete, one of the most widely-used construction materials in the world, while also reducing the amount of embodied carbon dioxide that’s involved in the production of Portland cement-based concrete.

Having completed my Bachelor of Civil Engineering at Flinders University in 2018, I am now working as a structural design engineer with WGA in Adelaide. Working at WGA has been amazing, and I have had the opportunity to visit different a variety of industrial, mining and maritime site locations. 

As structural engineers, we face real world technical problems every day – such as the corrosion of ageing steel structures and the degradation of concrete. This is compounded by the need for local industry to support our economy, as well as the global need to minimise our environmental impact by sourcing more sustainable alternatives to replace conventional finite construction materials.

I love having the chance to work towards solve these problems – all while ensuring designs are compliant and safe for society to use. Through my mining site visits I have had the opportunity to see these problems first-hand and have done some pretty amazing things in the process – like jumping in confined-space pontoons beneath water on floating marine structures, and climbing all the way up a 40-metre ladder tower to inspect corroded steel.

More Alumni Updates

Susan Lee – Environmental pioneer

2006 Playford Trust PhD Environmental Scholarship
I was the first student to receive a Playford Trust Environment Scholarship in 2006. Studies in the environment tend to include a lot of fieldwork and trips away from civilisation, so the scholarship really helped me with these costs!

Lucas (Tuan) Tran – Energy Engineer

2021 Playford Trust/Cooper Energy Petroleum Engineering Scholarship
In 2017, I came to Australia as an international student from Vietnam to pursue a world-class education in Petroleum Engineering at the University of Adelaide. After finishing my Honours degree, I began my PhD project…

Robert Trott – Exoskeleton and physiological measurement

2017 Playford Trust PhD Scholarship
Robbie is now working as a Research Fellow at the Australian Industrial Transformation Institute (AITI) – a national leader in industry and workplace innovation research – and he’s based at Flinders University.

Bec Pedler – R&D technician, Clean Seas Seafood

2019 Playford Trust Regional Science & Engineering Scholarship
Marine mollusc extracts represent an almost entirely unexploited source of broad-spectrum antivirals against human viruses. My Honours project involved assessing the hemolymph (blood fluid) from the Greenlip abalone and Pacific oyster for antiviral activity against Human Coronavirus…

Alexander Makarowsky – Maths modelling and energy

2018 Codan/Playford Trust Engineering Scholarship
The year after winning his scholarship, Alex joined the company that sponsored him – Codan/Minelab Electronics. There he used mathematical modelling to optimise the geometry of metal detector coils.

Joe Kupke – Man of the trees

2018 Playford Trust/TAFE SA Award
At the time Joe received his Playford Trust Award, he was employing just two staff in his arborist business, Adelaide Hills Tree Services. Now there are 10 on the team…

Phiala Shanahan – Professor of Physics at MIT

2011 Scantech/Playford Trust scholarship
In 2020, respected Science News magazine named Phiala one of its Top 10 elite young scientists ‘pushing the boundaries of scientific enquiry’. All of those honoured…

Michael Dello-Lacovo – Space scientist

2014 AusIMM/Playford Trust Honours Scholar
I received the AusIMM/Playford Trust Scholarship for my Honours degree in geophysics in 2014 for the thesis topic ‘heat flow and geothermal energy in South Australia’….

Kate Delaporte – Curator, Waite Arboretum

1996 Playford Trust PhD Scholarship
Kate was only the third student to receive a Playford Trust scholarship. Now she’s Curator of SA’s Waite Arboretum and Senior Lecturer at the Waite Campus of the University of Adelaide…


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