Norman Curry Award for Innovation and Excellence in Educational Programs

Recognising a wide variety of programs and initiatives, all of which demonstrate innovation and excellence in support of, and service to, teaching and learning.

The Norman Curry Award recognises excellence in programs, demonstrating: distinctiveness, coherence and clarity of purpose; a positive influence on student learning and student engagement; breadth of impact; and concern for equity and diversity.

The Norman Curry Award is an open category – all programs and initiatives which meet the above definition are equally eligible.

The Norman Curry Award is open to individuals and teams providing projects or services relating to teaching and learning within any organisational unit of the University. The nomination of programs involving professional staff members of the University is encouraged, as are programs involving collaboration with partner organisations.

The University usually confers one Award annually.

How to apply

About Norman Curry

Norman Curry was born in 1931 and completed his secondary education at Melbourne Boys High School. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Education from the University of Melbourne and obtained his doctorate from the University of London.

Curry has been one of the State’s pre-eminent educationalists, having held the senior positions of Principal of the State College of Victoria from 1977 to 1981 and Director-General of Education from 1982 to 1985. He has served on a number of School Councils, including a period as Vice-Chairman of the Council of Scotch College. Nationally, he has served on such bodies as the Commonwealth Schools Commission and chaired the ABC Schools Broadcasting Advisory Board.

The contribution made by Norman Curry to theological education through the Melbourne College of Divinity is also remarkable. He attended his first meeting of the College as an appointee of the Anglican Church in August 1973 and was President of the College from 1995 to 1997. During his Presidency he was heavily involved in discussions with both the State and Commonwealth Governments about the future of theological education and need for financial support for students of theology. His outstanding contribution to the College was recognised in 2000 when he was awarded the Degree of Doctor of Sacred Theology (Honoris Causa). The encomium in support of that Honorary Doctorate cited that “Throughout all his years serving the College, Norman Curry has never lost sight of the vision of theological education which honours God and serves the community”.

His community service has included the Victorian Relief Committee, the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme Committee and presidency of the Library Council of Victoria (1986–1989). He was President of the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Society from 1986 to 1991.

Norman Curry has been the longest serving cleric in the history of St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne, having been ordained in 1961. His capacity to be able to combine a distinguished professional and public career with over 40 years honorary service in the priesthood is a remarkable record.

Norman Curry has also made an outstanding contribution to the University. A member of the academic staff of the Faculty of Education at the University of Melbourne from 1959 to 1974, he served as Sub-Dean of that Faculty from 1969 to 1971. Initially joining the University Council as the Minister of Education’s appointee from 1982 to 1985, he was elected back into its ranks by the graduates in 1988 and served continuously from that date until 2004. Over the last ten years prior to that he had been a Deputy Chancellor of the University, representing the University on innumerable occasions and presiding over many ceremonies. He has taken great interest in matters related to student and staff welfare and amenities, devoting many hours to membership and leadership of Council committees with those areas of responsibility. His wisdom and insight have enriched too many University bodies to list separately, but the University’s particular debt to his stewardship of and vision for its buildings and grounds should be acknowledged.

In 1997 Dr Curry was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for service to education, particularly to educational thought and practice.