Lena Durbridge says she’s not into collecting awards, just other people’s rubbish!

This is one reason why the Warwick Senior High School laboratory technician has been nominated for the School Services Staff Member of the Year prize in the WA Education Awards. It would be her second award in 12 months.

“I am the biggest hoarder and dumpster diver you can imagine,” she says.

“I am always thinking I could use this to make a cell or planet for teachers and students to use in class exercises.

“I get a lot of satisfaction when I learn how the teacher has ‘smashed it’ in the classroom. It just makes me want to work even harder.

“As a team we have so much fun, bouncing ideas off one another. It’s all about the team and the kids!”

Lena is a member of Warwick’s STEAM team.

STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) education is helping to connect classroom learning with the very real work opportunities beyond school.

In nominating Lena for the award, Warwick said her work greatly contributed to the outstanding educational outcomes being experienced by students at the school. She was also described as the “glue that binds the science team together”.

The school also recognised Lena as a major driver behind three huge initiatives, the:

  • Science Week Primary Fair
  • Perth Science Festival
  • Primary Schools STEAM Challenge Day.

Lena also volunteers her time so students can attend Science Club and other activities.

In December 2017, Lena won the Regional Laboratory Technician Group Award through the Department of Education.