Australian Respiratory Council


The ARC Sheila Simpson OAM Education Scholarship - 2021

Sheila Simpson OAM
Sheila Simpson OAM

The Australian Respiratory Council (ARC) is a charitable not-for-profit organisation formed in 1913. The organisation has been in continuous operation since this time and has over the past century established a role and profile as an organisation that has successfully engaged the community, academics, researchers, government and industry to bring much needed attention and investment in respiratory health.

The work of the ARC is focused around funding innovative research and projects to promote respiratory health and improving lung health in communities, particularly disadvantaged communities within Australia and the Asia Pacific Region. The ARC is committed to supporting Australia and countries within the Asia Pacific Region to address the suffering associated with tuberculosis (TB) and respiratory illness.

Globally, TB continues to be a disease of public health significance, a quarter of the world’s population is infected with TB with an estimated 10 million new TB cases annually. TB is the leading cause of death associated with an infectious disease, each year there are 1.8 million deaths globally in people with the disease.

The Australian TB Program, over the last century has successfully reduced the impact and burden of TB. Australia now joins with global efforts to move from a low burden of disease to TB elimination. To achieve this a skilled and knowledgeable health care workforce utilising new tools and innovative strategies is essential.

Nurses comprise the largest proportion of the TB Program workforce, globally. Participation in specialist education enables the development of knowledge and skills required to work effectively within the Australian TB Program and contribute to enhanced global TB control.

To support elimination efforts in Australia, ARC has been working in partnership with Western Sydney University, School of Nursing and Midwifery and the National TB Program stakeholders to develop the Graduate Diploma/Masters in Nursing (TB Management). The course, the first of its kind internationally, represents a significant educational opportunity for developing nursing workforce capacity within the Australian TB Program. The ARC is committed to supporting capacity building for the Australian TB Program through the development of specialist nurses.

To support future students ARC is initiating a scholarship program to award up to three scholarships each year to enable nurses to undertake the speciality units within the Graduate Diploma/Masters in Nursing (TB Management).

In recognition of the outstanding contribution of Sheila Simpson OAM, to the work of ARC, her clinical leadership and mentoring of the nursing workforce within the speciality area of TB, over four and a half decades, the grants are named “The ARC Sheila Simpson OAM Nursing Education Scholarship”.

Throughout her career, Sheila has tirelessly provided care and treatment services in a number of roles for people with respiratory illness and TB. Sheila was employed as a Clinical Nurse Consultant in the speciality area of TB for 31 years, retiring in 2018. Sheila through her expert knowledge is seen as a clinical leader in the care and management of people with TB. In 2020, Sheila was awarded an OAM for “services to nursing”.

Scholarship Criteria

The ARC will award up to three grants in 2021 to students undertaking the Western Sydney University, Graduate Diploma/Masters of Nursing (TB Management). The scholarship will cover the enrolment fee for a single unit of study for any one of the following three specialist units of study within the course:

  • Clinical management of tuberculosis
  • Public health management of tuberculosis
  • Care of people with tuberculosis.

To be eligible for the scholarship, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  1. Current financial member of ARC, and
  2. Registered nurse working within the Australian TB Program, and
  3. Have enrolled in one of the three TB speciality units of study listed above, and
  4. Consent to have a profile published in ARC’s annual report and website.

Applicants who meet the above criteria can apply for more than one scholarships throughout the duration of their studies. The funding will be allocated in one tranche on awarding of the scholarship.

The ARC will exercise its absolute discretion in the award of these grants and reserves the right not to make any award in any one year.

Please find a link to the application form for the scholarship

For further information on the scholarship grants, please contact Amanda Christensen AM, Executive Director of ARC on 02 9223 3166 or

For further information about the work of ARC please refer to the following website:

For further information on the Western Sydney University Post Graduate/Masters of Nursing (TB Management)

For information on the course please contact the Academic Course Advisor, Dr Linda Gregory:

For course and admission enquiries, please contact the course information line by phone: 1300 897 669 or email

Link to the Western Sydney University Masters of Nursing Handbook