The Academy Team
Great thinkers, great doers, great educators.
Head of The Academy
Jonathon has 20 years' university teaching and leadership experience, having taught in three countries, and has supervised many international award-winning students. In addition to his extensive teaching, he has held a number of leadership roles at Western including, Provost of Penrith Campus (2011-2014); Director of Academic Program for Design within the School of Humanities and Communication Arts (2012-2013), and Associate Head of School (Industrial Design) in the School of Engineering (2008-2010). Prior to Western he held academic positions at Monash University, Massey University, NZ, and Loughborough University, UK.
His teaching centres on design's role in enhancing the social, cultural and environmental landscapes of people's lives. An Industrial Designer by training, his PhD was in designing for people with disabilities and wearable computing, and his research interests span material intelligence and intelligent use of materials, designing for people with disabilities, and the application of design thinking to address pressing concerns related to food security, climate change, and health. He's been playing with Augmented Reality for the last few years to explore and engage in the future and to discover art and (hi)stories in unlikely places.
Dr Robert Salama has eight years of teaching experience as a lecturer at Western Sydney University and a PhD in the design of miniature microstrip antennas that are implantable in the human body for various biomedical applications such as nerve stimulation. His research focus is on implantable antennas, microwave wireless power transmission, and developing electromagnetic sensors for recording physiological data.
In 2013, Robert won the Graduate Student Best Poster Award – 2nd Place – that was presented by the IEEE International Instrumentation and Measurement Technology Conference, Minneapolis, Minnesota, for his paper entitled 'An Embeddable Microwave Patch Antenna Module for Civil Engineering Applications'.
Currently as the Academic Coordinator at The Academy, Robert is investigating new innovative teaching techniques to provide Academy students with an engaging and stimulating learning experience. Robert has always been motivated in his teaching career by the belief that academics have the opportunity to significantly influence the future by dynamically educating tomorrow's professionals, the students.