Michael Pakakis, AM


Michael has a BSc in microbiology and biochemistry from Latrobe University and a Dip Ed from Monash University. He has directed VSSEC since 2006. He was awarded the Latrobe University Deans Medal for outstanding service to Science and Engineering, 2007.

Vicky Scicluna

Administration Manager

Vicky is the first point of contact for all enquiries relating to VSSEC. She manages our front office, bookings, events and general finance. Vicky is friendly, organised and has a bubbly personality. She has
been a staff member with VSSEC for over 12 years.

Peta Kenny

Industry Liasion & Finance Manager

Peta has a BEng in Environmental Engineering from RMIT. Peta is responsible for liaising with industry representatives, contributes to the development of new programs and manages VSSECs finances and reporting.

Mark Gleeson

Curriculum Manager

Mark has a BSc and a Master of Teaching, with industry expertise in Science and Engineering. His role is to explore development of current and emergent curriculum areas. Mark loves a good pun.

Danielle Shean

Laboratory Manager, Curriculum Developer

Danielle has a BSc in geology and MSc in palaeontology from Monash University. Danielle is responsible for the operation of the laboratory, and development of VSSEC programs. Danielle was once stuck in a cave for six hours.

Stephen Gray

IT Manager

Stephen has a degree in Information Technology from Federation University. He is responsible for maintaining the technology in VSSEC, ensuring the best experience for students who participate in our programs. Stephen is the one who keeps the lights on in the literal sense.

Ciara Pell

Program & Social Media Manager

Ciara has a BSc in Applied Physics and a GradDip in Astronomy. She is responsible for the running of day-to-day programs, managing social media accounts, supporting the Challenge Enrichment project and development of new programs. Ciara remembers receiving a telescope for her 12th birthday.

Emma Barnett

Student Excellence Program Manager

Emma has a BSc in physics from the University of Melbourne. With a deep enthusiasm for STEM outreach and education, they coordinate the Invisible Universe and VSSEC STEM Club programs. Emma once filled in for a kids entertainment show as a clown named Wally.

Thomas Barnes

Professional Learning Manager

Thomas has a BSc in biology from Deakin University and a Grad. Dip. Ed from RMIT University. His duties include developing PD for the centre, program writing and assisting in the delivery of VSSEC programs. His favourite family of dinosaurs are the Hadrosaurs.

Dr Chris Kladis

Curriculum Developer

Dr Chris Kladis has a PhD in physical chemistry and spectroscopy from RMIT. He is currently developing new STEM curriculum. Chris has survived flaming sodium shrapnel and unruly chemical rockets.

Dr Brett Biddington AM, PhD

External Relations Advisor, Chair, Advisory Group

Dr Brett Biddington has a PhD in space security from UNSW; he serves as VSSEC’s external relations and grants advisor. In 2012, Brett was admitted as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM). Read More.