Here at the LX.lab, we know that Emily Quinn Smyth is a pretty incredible individual. We first met Emily when she shared her experience with us of using AUSLAN in her undergraduate science studies at UTS, and her discovery that for many terms in environmental science, there was no AUSLAN equivalent. Emily had turned her attention to looking for solutions, and completed a project titled ‘Falling on Deaf Ears: Effective Communication of Science and the Current Gaps in Auslan in the Scientific World’.

Of course, this was not the last we heard of Emily. We next saw her interviewed in the UTS U:mag and featured in the Equal Futures podcast, before appearing in the Canberra Times and the Blue Mountains Gazette, as well as speaking at Parliament House twice, and delivering the closing address to delegates of the Science in Australia Gender Equity Symposium on this topic. In short, Emily has been tireless in her advocacy and awareness raising for an issue that affects many, but is not well known in or beyond the scientific community.

In that time, we’ve also had the privilege of working with Emily since she joined the LX.lab team as a Learning Technologies Support Officer. She’s been an incredibly valuable member of our team, through providing excellent service to the staff the LX.lab supports and helping to shape the LX.lab in its early stages. She’s also a great colleague who we all love working with, and we’ve missed her enormously while she’s been away in Canada interning with environmental organisation A Rocha.

So we’re thrilled that Emily is the recipient of the Social Inclusion award. The award was for ‘For raising community awareness of hearing loss and Auslan use in science through the project ‘Falling on Deaf Ears – current gaps in Auslan and the scientific world’, involving the deaf community in the development and expansion of Auslan to address the gap in science vocabulary’. It’s recognition that is very much deserved, and we know that whatever comes next for Emily, her future’s looking bright.

Congratulations from all of us, Emily!  And congratulations to all the winners and nominees.

Read more about the UTS Human Rights Awards on UTS: Newsroom.

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