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August 11, 2015 @ 6:15 pm - 8:00 pm


SPEAKER:  Laura Driessen

SUBJECT:  ‘To Infinity and Beyond”…..The National Youth Science Forum.

In 2010 Laura was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Lilydale to attend the National Youth Science Forum in Canberra.

This as the letter below shows opened her mind to a career in science.

From: Laura Driessen

Sent: Tuesday, July 14, 2015 7:03 PM

To: [email protected]

Subject: Thank you, from an NYSF Alumni


Dear Rotary Lilydale,


In 2009, your rotary branch kindly supported my attendance at the National Youth Science Forum (NYSF) that ran in the summer of 2010.  Thank you very much.


After I finished VCE in 2010, I went on to study a Bachelor of Science (Science Scholars) program at Monash University. I graduated in the middle of last year (2014) with a high distinction average and majors in Astrophysics and Applied Mathematics.


While I was studying at Monash University, I was awarded a scholarship to complete a three month exchange at the University of Warwick in the UK (near Birmingham).  While I was on exchange, I was invited to visit Meknes, Morocco, to attend and present at a student forum.


Over the 2013-2014 summer holidays, I completed a studentship at the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research.  While there I imaged and studied the centre of our Milky Way galaxy using a brand new radio telescope, the Murchison Widefield Array.


The weekend after I finished my final semester (I finished in June 2014) I attended another summer studentship at the The Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy (ASTRON) in Dwingeloo, The Netherlands.  There I studied the pulsar in the Crab Nebula and found some interesting results.


After the studentship at ASTRON, I started applying for overseas universities to study a master’s degree in astronomy, specifically radio astronomy.  Just two weeks ago, I found at that I had received the Amsterdam Merit Scholarship to attend the University of Amsterdam.  I will be leaving for the Netherlands on the 16th of August to complete this two-year master’s degree.


Thank you so much for helping me to attend NYSF.  Before attending the International Science School for two weeks in 2009 and NYSF in 2010, I didn’t realise that being a scientist was a real job.  I loved science so much but everyone was telling me to be a doctor or a physiotherapist. And while those are great careers, they weren’t for me.  Now I can’t think of any other career than one in radio astronomy.


Kind regards,


Laura Driessen



August 11, 2015
6:15 pm - 8:00 pm


Chirnside Park Country Club
68 Kingswood Drive
Chirnside Park,3116Australia
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Contact the Rotary Club of Lilydale

Postal Address:    P.O. Box 127, Lilydale, Victoria  3140

Telephone:     0423 558 833

E-Mail Address:   [email protected]

Web Page:          www.rotarylilydale.org.au





Meeting Details

The Rotary Club of Lilydale currently meets bi-weekly on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month. We meet at York on Lilydale, start arriving from 6:30 pm for 7:00 pm start.

Enter the Function room via Carpark. In the foyer look out for RCL sandwich board.
Register @ RCL check-in desk inside the Function room.

For current meeting details, refer to Events Calendar. To connect with meetings via Zoom click on this link.

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