WA Branch News 2024

06/06/2024 | General


It’s been a busy time for the WA branch!

First, our face-to-face seminar program is back in full swing. In February we were delighted to host Angus Newton (ESR New Zealand) sharing key lessons learned from the 2019 Christchurch shootings, followed by a fascinating seminar about visual identification of persons with Dr Zuzana Obertova (University of Western Australia) in March. For a special April event, we heard flash presentations from ANZFSS Symposium Award and IAFS 2023 Discipline Award winners on their research including soil minerology, forensic toxicology, DNA analysis and more. We have a packed schedule for the remainder of 2024, starting with our June seminar on “Operation Trink” – a Western Australia Police initiative to combat drink spiking incidents. Attendance at our regular seminars has been increasing, and we’ve welcomed more than 25 new members to the Branch so far this year!

Our community outreach this year included a stall at the Murdoch University Open Day. The stall saw a steady stream of visitors coming by to chat about potential career paths in forensic science, or just to develop their very own fingerprints! This was a great way to boost visibility of the Branch, and we are considering a potential event for this year’s National Science Week to build on this momentum. On a similar vein, the Branch has moved from Twitter/X into the LinkedIn sphere, with a fantastic engagement rate so far.

In exciting upcoming news, we are pleased to announce the return of the WA Forensic Science Forum for 2024! This one-day meeting will be a showcase of local forensic science from practitioners and students, featuring a range of oral presentations (including invited speakers from local industry and our 2023 Professional Development Award recipient) and an open poster session with plenty of professional networking opportunities. The call for abstracts is open until Friday 28th June, and the submission form can be downloaded here.

On that note, the Branch recently closed nominations for the 2024 Professional Development Award. While several high-quality nominations were received, we are delighted to congratulate Colby Hymus (PathWest Forensic Biology) as the 2024 Awardee. Colby will use this Award to attend the 2025 European Academy of Forensic Science meeting in Dublin, Ireland. This will represent the first time that WA Forensic Biology services have been represented, and so we wish Colby all the best for an engaging and thought-provoking symposium.


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