This award commemorates the major contribution made by the late Maria Lane to education, especially in the area of education for Indigenous Australians. The Maria Lane Education Prize was offered for the first time in 2021, consolidating previous Padnendadlu Bursaries offered since 2004 and an earlier award in Maria Lane’s name.
The late Indigenous scholar, academic and advocate Maria Lane was an inspirational role model and champion for education for Indigenous Australians. Maria Lane was born in a remote Indigenous community in South Australia, and in her lifetime went from being a domestic worker on a pastoral station at age fifteen to becoming a Senior Lecturer at the University of South Australia where she supported more than a thousand Indigenous students in their paths to graduation until her tragic early death in 2008. Her academic work such as the 2008 publication co-authored by Maria with her husband Joseph Lane Hard Grind – The Making of an Urban Indigenous Population continues to inform contemporary thought.
The Prize is offered annually as an award for an Indigenous woman of outstanding academic merit studying in Education through UniSA Education Futures at the University of South Australia. The Maria Lane Aboriginal Education Prize will be awarded to an Aboriginal education student who has demonstrated commitment to academic studies and progress towards becoming a teacher. It recognises academic achievement and provides encouragement for recipients to complete their degree.
Winifred (Win) Preedy (1901 – 1989) was educated at St Peter’s Collegiate Girls’ School and later became the President of their Old Scholars’ Association. At University she started an Arts degree, but switched to Dentistry and, in 1927, was the second woman to graduate with a Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) from the University of Adelaide.
After her graduation, Win Preedy worked at the Dental Hospital in the mornings and in her own private practice in rooms in the afternoons. Forty years later, failing eyesight forced her to take an assistant and she sold the practice in 1972.
Win was a keen Soroptimist, a member of Toc H International and the National Council of Women, and a Life Member of AUWGA (later Graduate Women SA Trust Inc).
After her death in 1989, awards were established in her name for students of the University of Adelaide Dental School undertaking degrees in dentistry or an allied field.
The prize will be awarded annually to a female student in the third or fourth year of their undergraduate degree and recognises both their academic achievement and contribution to the community.
Emmaline Nancy Webb (1925-1998) completed a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Mathematics and History in 1948 and a Diploma of Education in 1949. Nancy taught mathematics to secondary students until her retirement in 1985.
Nancy Webb was an active member of the Graduate Women SA Trust Inc’s precedent organisations from 1949 where she assisted with the operation of the academic dress hire service, particularly the organisation of the volunteer roster. Nancy Webb became a trustee of the Graduate Women SA Trust Inc Fund in March 1993, and remained a trustee until she died in 1998.
In June 1999, by agreement with the University of Adelaide School of Mathematical Sciences, the trustees established the Nancy Webb Prize, in recognition of Nancy’s contributions to Mathematics and education in South Australia. The prize recognises talented women in the Mathematical Sciences and is awarded annually to a woman in the final year of a Bachelor degree in the Faculty of Mathematical and Computer Sciences at the University of Adelaide.