Connecting virtually with the WEHI network

Connecting virtually with the WEHI network

Illuminate newsletter index page, Autumn 2021
March 2021

Parasitology alumni reunion held in February 2020.

Online events provide a new way for alums to network with peers and reconnect with WEHI.

Following a successful parasitology reunion held in person at the Parkville campus in February 2020, COVID-19 restrictions forced a rethink of how WEHI brings alums together.

With WEHI researchers working towards better approaches to diagnose, treat and prevent the spread of coronaviruses, we held an online forum in July 2020 for alums and donors to learn about our COVID-19 research.

At the forum, director Professor Doug Hilton AO, spoke about how WEHI had prioritised research during the epidemic. Joint Head of Infectious Diseases and Immune Defence Professor Marc Pellegrini outlined the multifaceted approach WEHI had taken to combatting COVID-19, including setting up various clinical trials and research endeavours. Dr Kym Lowes spoke about how WEHI researchers were using the infrastructure of the National Drug Discovery Centre to search for potential therapeutics for COVID-19.

WEHI has also used online platforms to connect with alums in other ways. In October 2020, WEHI’s new brand was unveiled to alums during an exclusive online event, which was well-received by those in attendance.

Alumni Relations Adviser Belinda Zipper said the transition to online events and engagement activities had created new opportunities for alumns to connect.

“By moving many of our alum events online, we’re making them more accessible for people to attend from all corners of the globe so they can network with their
peers and reconnect with the WEHI community,” she said.

“As our alums are a small group and are geographically dispersed, holding events online has allowed people to attend from places as far afield as the US, Hong Kong, Germany, Switzerland and Brazil.”

“While we’re looking forward to being able to host in-person events again in the near future, we’re also excited to be able to offer new virtual events for alums.”

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