Two UNSW students have been recognised for their leadership and service by the Governor-General, Major General Michael Jeffery AC, CVO, MC (Retd).

In a ceremony last week, Johanna Elms and Laurie Pearcey were presented with prizes sponsored by the Order of Australia Association Foundation. The prizes include a $40,000 contribution to assist with tertiary education fees and a mentoring relationship with an eminent member of the Order of Australia Association Foundation.

Johanna is a third-year Bachelor of Advanced Science student, majoring in pharmacology, and Laurie is a third-year Bachelor of International Studies student, majoring in Asian Studies and Mandarin Chinese.

Johanna is active in sport, dance and student politics and is a volunteer for the Red Cross and St John's Ambulance Service. She hopes to become a toxicologist working with victims of drug overdose and toxic animal bites. She also wants to be an advocate on behalf of developing countries to promote greater access to cheaper pharmaceutical and medical care.

In June this year Laurie will begin a 12-month Overseas Study Program at Tsinghua University in Beijing, working exclusively in Mandarin Chinese. He hopes to work for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in an Australian diplomatic mission in China, or manage Australian aid projects with AusAid. He recently launched the Australia China Youth Business Council that aims to increase career opportunities for young Australian graduates with skills relevant to China.

The cash component of the prizes awarded to the UNSW students was made possible through funds generously donated by Mr Frank P Lowy, AC through the Westfield Foundation.