Our People

How we teach

We encourage you to think differently. Our educational approach is hands-on, highly interactive and often pushing the boundaries of what a classroom is or should look like. Our view is that if you want to foster change makers, you’ve got to get them to think outside of the box.

During the course, students will learn to think and act like global change advocates and leaders, not necessarily leading from the front, but nonetheless driving meaningful and systemic change within organisation and broader society. Our responsive program design provides an absorbing and creative learning environment where students can stretch their thought processes and find new ways of creatively approaching the same challenge.

By using retreats, play-based learning, mindfulness practice, community/industry excursions and leadership activities conducted only within the degree, Global Challenges brings a strong multidisciplinary framework to a science-based course. Students are equipped to pursue industry-based work and/or further study beyond their undergraduate degree. . This is because today it takes more than just a strong scientific background to affect change; in addition to studying the scientific discipline of your choice – from the broad range available at Monash – you'll receive in-depth training in leadership, persuasive communication, entrepreneurship, policy, ethics and corporate social responsibility.

Activities like student-led seminars, dialogues with business and government leaders, working with leading scientific researchers and undertaking internships both locally and overseas, highlights the unique intersection of communication, leadership, business and science that Global Challenges integrates together.


What our students are saying

“GC has enabled me to expand my comfort zone, gain exposure to industries I would have never worked in, and change my perspective on what a career can be. No longer do I see a career as one prescribed pathway, but rather a wide array of opportunities where I can develop skills to contribute to society and make an impact.”  
Nigel - Global Challenges student
“Global Challenges combines the skills you learn in a regular university degree, with an incredible range of skills in leadership, communication, and entrepreneurship. This broadens your perspective on the world and teaches you so much about yourself. It’s this powerful combination that empowers young scientists to get out there and make an impact with their work. From a young age I've been a high achiever, but I always wanted to prove that I was more than the marks on my report card. My hunger to prove myself combined with a desire to make a positive impact for social and environmental issues drove me to take up Global Challenges.”
Hien - Global Challenges student
“My drive to reshape the world drew me to the course. Global Challenges has shown me that anything is possible, but it has to start with you. Throughout the course I have discovered my true abilities. Global Challenges has helped me to see that everyone has a place in solving some of the world’s most complex issues. It takes a diverse range of people to form a powerful, sustaining impact. I’m excited to see the results of such a forward-thinking course empowering the next generation to change the world.”
Brady - Global Challenges student

Our students have a passion to challenge the way we think.

Danushi Peiris

Danushi Peiris

Bachelor of Science- Advanced – Global Challenges (Honours)
(Chemistry Major)

“Global Challenges goes much further than teaching the foundations of science. I am surrounded by an engaged, passionate and intelligent group of individuals and this has definitely been a highlight of the degree for me. The opportunity to meet industry leaders, create a start-up and gain exposure to areas such as science communication and policy are invaluable. Global Challenges encourages me to proactively seek out problems and design solutions for them. I chose this degree to help foster my own creativity and develop the STEM skills required to create innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing issues.”

Brady Cronin

Brady Cronin

Bachelor of Science Advanced - Global Challenges (Honours)
(Ecology and Conservation Biology Major)

“My drive to reshape the world drew me to the course. Global Challenges has shown me that anything is possible, but it has to start with you. Throughout the course I have discovered my true abilities. Global Challenges has helped me to see that everyone has a place in solving some of the world’s most complex issues. It takes a diverse range of people to form a powerful, sustaining impact. I’m excited to see the results of such a forward-thinking course empowering the next generation to change the world.”

Hien Vu

Hien Vu

Bachelor of Science Advanced - Global Challenges (Honours)
(Computational Science Major)

“Global Challenges combines the skills you learn in a regular university degree, with an incredible range of skills in leadership, communication, and entrepreneurship. This broadens your perspective on the world and teaches you so much about yourself. It’s this powerful combination that empowers young scientists to get out there and make an impact with their work. From a young age I've been a high achiever, but I always wanted to prove that I was more than the marks on my report card. My hunger to prove myself combined with a desire to make a positive impact for social and environmental issues drove me to take up Global Challenges.”

Jake Port

Bachelor of Science Advanced - Global Challenges (Honours)
(Immunology Major)

“Before I started university, I knew that I wanted to use science to address some of the major challenges we face as a society today. I could only do this if I had the right skill set, which this degree specifically teaches. This course is unique in that it gives you the opportunity to study entrepreneurship, leadership and communication skills while at the same time developing a strong scientific framework. It encourages excellence and a mindset that looks across borders.”

Tanaya Joshi

Tanaya Joshi

Bachelor of Science Advanced - Global Challenges (Honours)
(Genetics Major)

“The Global Challenges course is a dive in the deep end from the get go – the degree catalyses change through moving us into the direction we want to go instead of theorising about the potential future we might have one day. The course has a ‘do it’ mentality. I love working  with people, and learning about what grassroots change really looks like. I admire people for their courage to change things and I want to be that kind of person. I want the pillars of Global Challenges course reflected in every facet of my life, to embrace the here and now head on.”

Joshua Zail

Bachelor of Science Advanced - Global Challenges (Honours)
(Mathematics Major)

“Global Challenges pushes you to do things you never thought were possible, from starting a business, to publishing a blog, to creating a policy brief, plus finding mentors and internships. Everything you do extends your personal and professional growth and development. I chose Global Challenges because it will enable me to channel my passion for science and discovery towards real-world impact. This course has shown me that the solution to uncertainty isn’t certainty, but learning to flourish in uncertainty. I am learning the skills and the mindset to face any situation and make the most of every opportunity.”

Saxbee Affleck

Saxbee Affleck

Bachelor of Science Advanced - Global Challenges (Honours)
(Ecology and Conservation Major)

“I started this degree with the idea that impossible things can happen and that tomorrow can be better than it is today. It’s that mindset coupled with vulnerability and an open mind which led me to the Global Challenges course. The course takes a traditional science degree and exposes it to a new era of discovery that goes beyond research. I hope that the Global Challenges program will lead me to a purpose-driven career, which will allow me to pursue opportunities that can make a meaningful change in the world.”

Global Challenges isn’t just about a four-year degree, it’s about being part of a community of like minded thinkers that collaborate and support one another. By joining the alumni group you are accessing a wealth of knowledge and expertise as well as a network that can open doors to areas you may have not previously considered. You can find out more about where our students have gone on our Career Outcomes page.

Djuke Veldhuis

Associate Professor / Course Director
- Bachelor of Science Advanced - Global Challenges (Honours)

Djuke is passionate about engaging at the intersection of science and society. She has developed and delivered science communications training to hundreds of people across the globe. Previous roles include managing FameLab, an international science communication competition in partnership with Cheltenham Festivals, The British Council and NASA, as well as work with the US Global Development Lab’s “Partnership for enhanced engagement in research. She holds a BA (hons) in Archaeology & Anthropology, majoring in Biological Anthropology, from the University of Cambridge. Her subsequent doctoral research, also at Cambridge, examined the effect of social and environmental change on human health and well-being in Papua New Guinea. This interdisciplinary research background sits alongside extensive teaching experience and a first-class MA degree in science journalism from City University, London.

Jake Port

Assistant Lecturer - Bachelor of Science Advanced Global Challenges (Honours)

“Global Challenges is the course that I did at Monash University and would still be the course I'd do today if I had my time again. Having worked at a big 4 accounting firm in R&D Tax, as a science journalist and as someone who loves bridging industries and thinking outside of the box, I am proud to be part of the team delivering this content and excited to see where our students take their learnings in the future.”

Michael Brown

Associate Professor, School of Physics and Astronomy

Science is more tangible than we often imagine. As an astronomer I often look upon the Moon like it’s another planet and recognise stars whose light has been travelling to us for years or even centuries. I think Global Challenges Honours is very much about utilising and strengthening the science that underpins many aspects of our society, ranging from commercial enterprise to medical research to our environment. As Honours coordinator, it is a pleasure to see Global Challenges students making the science more tangible and having a broader impact.

Rosemarie Herbet

“I started at Monash as an undergraduate science student and have never left! I completed my PhD investigating the genetic basis of Wolbachia’s protective effects in preventing A. aegypti mosquitoes from transmitting dengue virus in 2017. My current interests include developing student recognition of transferable skills, and promoting student employability through work integrated learning”