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The Messel Endowment

Securing the future of the International Science School

The Messel Endowment

For over 50 years the Professor Harry Messel International Science School (ISS) has inspired young scholars to pursue their love of science. To ensure the continuation of the ISS in perpetuity, in 1999 the Physics Foundation established The Messel Endowment. The Foundation and the School of Physics aim to provide the ISS program free of charge for our students, to make sure that no deserving young minds miss out on the experience.

The International Science School takes place every two years, usually in the first half of July. The program runs for two weeks, and each day is packed with inspiring talks by leading researchers from Australia and overseas, hands-on activities and experiments, and tours of scientific research labs and facilities. The ISS is a unique educational program that is run free of charge to participating students, providing an equal opportunity to talented scholars from all backgrounds, regardless of their socioeconomic circumstances. 

“I urge you to dig deep to ensure that my vision of 50 years ago continues into the future”. Professor Harry Messel AC CBE Founder of the International Science School.

The ISS pays for guest lecturers to travel and stay in Sydney, and funds activities and events for all students, and travel for Australian students. Residential staff are also employed to look after the students during their two-week stay at the University. This means that funding for the ISS is crucial. Every two years the Physics Foundation must raise $450,000 to run each School. This covers:

  • Student accommodation & travel $250,000
  • Lecturer accommodation & travel $30,000
  • ISS books, video production $20,000
  • Staff and volunteers $100,000

“If I was enthusiastic about science before attending the ISS, that was nothing compared to the motivation I feel now …. such an experience has helped me return to school with renewed enthusiasm and ambition – the impact of the ISS goes far beyond improved scientific understanding.” ISS Scholar 2011

Many ISS alumni go on to distinguished careers in a variety of fields including science, medicine, engineering, finance and management. Some of the world’s most outstanding researchers and leaders who are helping to shape our future were ISS scholars.

Please give generously. Your support for the Messel Endowment will have far-reaching effects, not only for the students who attend the ISS but for the communities in which they participate.  

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