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Eleanor pictured with her SBS Bank Rising Star 2022 award.

From running a successful beach clean-up at St Kilda to mentoring young women in the Health Sciences, Eleanor Dunn’s mahi has been deservedly recognised with her Blues and Golds outstanding member of the community nomination.

The fourth year medical student’s efforts in the volunteering sector seem to suggest she has more hours in the day than mere mortals.
In reality it seems the amount she gets achieved may come down to the fact she is “intelligent and driven” - as recognised in the Medical School Dean’s commendation she received in 2022.

Eleanor was nominated for Blues and Golds Award by academics and peers who worked with her across many volunteering sectors, and all of whom gave glowing reviews of her work and skills.

Eleanor is Vice President and Health and Safety Lead for the Student Volunteer Army (SVA) Otago, secretary for Myalgic Encephalitis Information and Support Services, a mentor for Otago Medical School and forStudents of Rural Health Aotearoa and a member of the Women in Health Network and Waterwise Otago.

She also contributes time to the Australasian College of Emergency Medicine, Save the Otago Peninsula and Dunedin Public Hospital Radiology research and is a tutor for the Otago Medical School, Crimson Education, MedView, Accelerate Tuition and Tutoring for Excellence, all while also working as a caregiver at Summerset at Bishopscourt.

The nomination for Eleanor said that the work she puts into the community is even more remarkable when considering her intellectually strenuous studies, and the “proactive and willing” ways that she engages with them.

Last year she completed an optional BMedSc (Hons) research year at the Christchurch UoO Department of Medicine emergency department.

Eleanor’s thesis was entitled ‘Evaluation of Improving Care Throughout Standardised Allocation to Emergent Stress Testing’.

She is now undertaking a PhD focusing on identifying new targets for the treatment of sepsis-induced cardiovascular complications, the findings of which will have direct effects on Māori Health Equity.

President of SVA Otago, Maia Dean, says Eleanor is “invaluable” in her role as Vice President, and approaches it with “professionalism, enthusiasm and dedication”.

The SVA is a non-profit organisation which “focuses on enfranchising University and Polytechnic students in volunteering opportunities within the community”, says Maia.

“Eleanor has a kind nature and quiet confidence to her and had a salient role in organising our St Kilda Beach Clean-Up.”

In recognition of her extensive service across many industries, Eleanor has also been awarded the Westpac New Zealand Social Experiment Scholarship, Otago Medical School Student-Lead Scholarship, Outward Bound Ka Mahi Scholarship and the SBS Bank RisingStar Award.

The Blues and Golds awards aim to recognise the sporting and cultural excellence of University of Otago students and OUSA affiliated clubs and Societies.

The ceremony will be held on Monday 11 September in the Otago Business School Atrium.

~Kōrero by Internal Communications Adviser Alice Billington

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