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More than you can Imaginarium! Win a trip overseas at USC

UNIVERSITY of the Sunshine Coast (USC) academics and students are contributing to the global conservation efforts with hands-on study trips and work placements in Cambodia, Borneo and Tonga.

In Borneo and Cambodia, USC's work assists with conservation, rehabilitation through the study of sun bears.

USC's International Relations project manager Dr Sheila Peake says USC works with the Borneo Sun Bear Conservation Centre in Borneo, and as part of Cambodia's successful "free the bears" campaign.

"We have been working with the Borneo Sun Bear Conservation Centre for about three years, and last year we expanded into Cambodia," Dr Peake says.

"We send about 10 students a year, and last year we also sent a group of students and academics.

"These are all rescue bears. In Cambodia, there are about 130 bears. Some of these bears are older bears who have been kept in cages as pets. Some of them have been in cages for up to ten years. They are caged when they are little but of course they grow up to be quite big. Once they get bigger they are never let out of their cages because they are wild animals and sun bears have very large claws.

"We have a lot of environmental science students participate but we try to ensure the program is open to as many students as possible, so we have had design students develop information panels in three languages in Borneo and Laos, and we have had communications and media students travel to Cambodia to manage an 'adopt a bear' campaign."

The University is also working in Tonga with the Swim with Humpback Whales industry to see how new local operations in Australia can develop. These are the only two places in the southern hemisphere you can do this activity.

As part of this year's USC Imaginarium community and open day on August 9, anyone who registers for the event is in with a chance to experience these conservation efforts for themselves.

By registering at the fun family event, which includes USC's Open Day, one lucky person will receive flights and accommodation for two to visit one of three countries where the University is currently conducting research. The winner will be able to choose between travelling to Malaysia, Cambodia or the Pacific Island nation of Tonga.

The Imaginarium prize winner will be able to inspect one of these great international projects and enjoy their own sight-seeing as well.

There will be plenty of other prizes and fun activities on offer at Imaginarium, which is designed to open the community's eyes to the world of possibilities offered at USC.

Head along and fly the perfect paper plane; check out the giant maze; see if you can fit in a giant bubble; try your hand at rock climbing on the free standing climbing walls; or simply explore the Global Village.

To register go to


Thinking about university? USC has around 100 undergraduate and postgraduate programs to choose from, across a range of study areas. Imaginarium is the day to find out about studying at USC. Take in the sights on a general campus tour, or if you know your program, book a specialist tour of facilities with the appropriate academic staff. There will also be information and advice on admissions, fees and scholarships. There are loads activities and displays, as well as entertainment all day, and a world of food to choose from.