International Student of the Year – English Language Training

Paola Pinzon (Colombia)

Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) Exam Preparation, Impact English College

Paola Pinzon

Paola started her studies at Impact English Collage in June 2019 at pre-intermediate level. Since then she has studied general English most of the time, passing through for pre-intermediate, intermediate, upper intermediate and finally advanced. She is currently attending a course called Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) Exam Preparation, as this is a prestigious certification to access to postgraduate programmes at universities and jobs around the world. She has been a Christmas on the Streets (COTS) volunteer for one and a half years. COTS is a not-for-profit organisation supporting men and women experiencing homelessness, founded in 2016. It is a movement supporting Victorian communities and she says ‘it has been my pleasure to contribute while I am a student here, especially through the Bushfire Relief Event and Crisis Accommodation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

International Student of the Year – Vocational Education & Training (VET)

Kimberly Mitchiko V. Clemencio (Philippines)

Diploma in Community Services, Southern Cross Education Institute

Kimberly Mitchiko V. Clemencio

Kimberly has obtained a Bachelor’s degree in the Philippines under the program Consular and Diplomatic Affairs also known as International Relations. In her first year in Australia she commenced Graduate studies of Law at Victoria University and became a member of Dictum Society. A year later, she decided to change to a Diploma in Community Service and once completed she will commence an Advanced Diploma in Community Service and Sector Management. Kimberley is a Study Melbourne Ambassador and has contributed in community roundtable discussions spearheaded by Vivienne Nguyen, Chairperson of VMC. She is also a contributing writer to The Philippine Times and ensures she stays connected to the Philippine Consulate for news and support available for Filipino students. She participated in the Department of Premier and Cabinet's initiative in producing a Coronavirus (COVID-19) PSA and used her language to explain the current restrictions in metro Melbourne and Victoria.

International Student of the Year – Higher Education

Alejandra Bogado Tervit (Paraguay)

Master of Education, University of Melbourne

Alejandra Bogado Tervit

Alejandra is studying a Master of Education specialising in Leadership and Management at the University of Melbourne. After a month in Victoria, she was involved and contributing to the Melbourne Graduate School of Education (MGSE) community by volunteering for the University Open Day. She has also completed her undergraduate law degree at the Catholic University of Asuncion and was awarded the Paraguayan Government BECAL Scholarship to study at the University of Melbourne. Alejandra became president of the Paraguayan Student Association (PSA) in November 2019 for the 2020 period. She volunteers within the larger community of the university through the Student Impact program in association with the Random Acts of Kindness Day in 2019, and became a peer mentor of the University of Melbourne Peer Mentor Program (MPMP) in 2020. Alejandra is a Spanish teacher in the Language Exchange Club, a student-run, not-for-profit club part of the University of Melbourne Student Union (UMSU) that provides a social language learning platform for second language learners.

International Student of the Year – Research

Fernando Gordillo Altamirano (Ecuador)

PhD in Science, Monash University

Fernando Gordillo Altamirano

Fernando completed his medical degree and commenced working as a general practitioner for a year in rural Ecuador. He then moved to Australia to study his Master’s degree in Infection and Immunity at the University of Sydney. His PhD project tackles one of the most threatening health crises the world is facing: antibiotic resistance and has received full scholarship funded by Monash University. He is currently developing a strategy called “phage therapy”. Phages are viruses that can kill these superbugs, without harming the patient. Fernando’s first publication on phage therapy won the awards for Publication of the Year at the School and Faculty levels last year. His second paper stemming from his research has recently been accepted for publication in Nature Microbiology, arguably the leading journal in Medical Microbiology in the world. Fernando has won the Nancy Millis Award for Outstanding Research by a PhD Student. Fernanda is a Graduate Teaching Associate for the Department of Microbiology at Monash University and has given online seminars to medical students at Universidad de los Andes (Venezuela) and biotechnology students at ESPE University (Ecuador).

International Student of the Year – Regional

Justin See (Philippines)

PhD in Community Planning & Development, La Trobe University

Justin See

Justin is currently studying a PhD in community planning and development at La Trobe University. He has presented his research at numerous conferences, the Asian Research Institute (ARI) at the National University of Singapore, RMIT and La Trobe University,  shared his thesis results at the 2019 International Research Forum on the Philippines, Melbourne; the Southeast Asian Geography Association (SEAGA) Conference based in Chulalongkorn University (Thailand); and Hong Kong Geography Day 2020 based in Hong Kong Baptist University (all online due to COVID-19). Justin has also had his journal article published in the leading climate change journals, Global Environmental Change. He is currently engaged in the following roles – Intercultural Ambassador for the City of Greater Bendigo, Board of Directors Loddon Campaspe Multicultural Services, Committee of Management Phoenix FM Community Radio and Radio Host, Phoenix FM. He volunteers as a radio co-host for two programmes at Phoenix FM: The Filipino Show and The Multicultural Show.

Victorian Student of the Year – Internationalisation

Laurence Daniel William Cashin (Australia)

Bachelor of Biomedical Science, La Trobe University

Laurence Daniel William Cashin

Laurence is currently studying a Bachelor of Biomedical Science at La Trobe University. He was awarded the LIMS Summer Research Scholarship and Dr Grant Drummonds research team provided a further scholarship. He is working towards gaining admission to postgraduate medicine to further his academic career. He has made significant contributions to the community through being a Scout Leader in training at 4th Brunswick Scout Group, in2 Science mentor at Antonine College, and while in Arusha, Tanzania, he volunteered at Mother's Mercy Orphanage and as a Medical Volunteer at St Elizabeth Hospital. Laurence has volunteered for three years at Two Birds One Scone and as President (2019-2020), developing and initiating a program that provides 800+ meals weekly to community members in hardship.

International Alumnus of the Year – Joint Winners

Feifei Liao (China)

Feifei Liao

Feifei is an entrepreneur and the co-founder and managing director of Story is Connection – a not-for-profit built upon the success of Act of TranslationBe You Be SceneFeifei CuriosityAfter 4:30 and Cefood. She participated in the Lord Mayor’s Student Welcome program as a regular volunteer and part of the flash mob at AsiaTOPA and performer in Act of Translation at the Immigration Museum. Feifei was selected for the QTEM program and accepted in the Banking and Finance International Study Program, which provides students opportunities to go overseas to broaden data and finance perspectives in a global context. Feifei has completed a Master of Banking and Finance at Monash University which assisted in helping her understand how to build and run a start-up business.

Lin Zhang (China)

Lin Zhang

Lin is a PhD candidate at the School of Population and Global Health at the University of Melbourne and Centre for Cancer Research, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre/Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre (VCCC). He founded the Moyi Health Tech (, which is a leading Melbourne-based health technology company focusing on Education and Artificial Intelligence in medicine. Under Lin’s lead, Moyi Health Tech works closely with three Melbourne-based institutions (University of Melbourne – School of Population and Global Health, Monash University – School of Public Health, Monash University – eResearch Center/Articial Intelligence Group) and one global partner (Shanghai Yuecheng Medical Investment Management) to develop the colorectal cancer prediction algorithm. He won various Entrepreneurship Competition Awards in Victoria and China – Champion of “2018 Sunan Cup of Entrepreneurship Competition” launched by the City of Melbourne and Australia China Association of Scientist and Entrepreneurs (ACASE). He has received four scholarships from the University of Melbourne during his PhD, including Melbourne International Research Scholarship, The Melbourne International Fee Remission Scholarship, Melbourne Abroad Travelling Scholarship and Population Health Investing in Research Student Training.

International Student of the Year – Premier's Award

Justin See (Philippines)

Justin See

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