Griffith University
Surfer in Cyber Security

Are you eligible for Breaking Barriers Category:


As a university academic, I have devoted my career to cybersecurity this unprecedentedly important area. I have developed numerous effective methods for efficient data communication and secure data sharing. I have developed several cyber security courses at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels, and attracted more than 500 students from different backgrounds in the current offering, including students from art, business, criminology, and engineering. I am the Computer Science Discipline Head in my school, looking after several programs including a Women in STEM program. I’ve also been a consultant for Gold Coast Primary Health Chain and helped improve their users’ data privacy protection. I have served as a program chair for several international conferences, and hosted one at GC in Dec. 2019 which attracted over 150 attendees from more than 20 countries. I serve on editorial boards of several influential international journals and recognized as a valuable contributor in the area.

BENEFIT – A description of the benefit of your work to Queensland (max 500 words)

As a university academic, I have made the following contributions that are significant not only in technical innovations for solving challenging research problems and design of new courses, but also in application values to Queensland industries, governments and communities for making more effective and secure deployment of our existing network infrastructures for information communication and data repositories. They are critically important for Queensland to maintain its leader position in information and communication technology, health and medical service provision, within the nation in the coming metaverse era. 

  1. Looked after the Computer Science discipline as its Head and academic programs including Bachelor of Computer Science, Diploma of Computing and Data Analytics, Graduate Certificate of Data Science, Double degree of Computer Science and Engineering. 
  2. Attracted the government funding ($728,800) to support the Women in STEM program and run the Diploma of Computing and Data Analytics program. This program offered 50 places for female students to transit to this area and provided financial support.
  3. Hosted an international conference “The 20th Parallel and Distributed Computing, Applications and Technologies” at Gold Coast as program chair, and attracted over 150 attendees from more than 20 countries to visit Gold Coast in Dec. 2019. 
  4. Attracted 2M funding to facilitate the cyber training program for female students together with Griffith colleagues and several industries. 
  5. Served as a consultant for Gold Coast Primary Health Chain and generated the Privacy Impact Assessment report to improve their users’ privacy protection. 
  6. Developed cyber security course and provided training for more than 1000 students till now.
  7. Developed numerous effective methods for efficient data communication and secure data sharing and published more than 70 research papers.
My work has generated the following benefits to Queensland:
Social benefit: 
  • Brought culture change towards a more embracing environment with my working experience in Japan, UK, China and Australia, which is especially important for Queensland today as we all interact more with the cyber space virtually than ever.
  • Created a cyber hygiene environment to improve social awareness by educating more than 500 students from different backgrounds each year, and attracted more female students to STEM, especially in cybersecurity area to fill the gap on shortages of cyber security professionals.
  • Improved the effectiveness of network communications among different social groups to promote the booming activities of AI-driven big-data analytics across Queensland.
  • Enabled more active medical data sharing at desired levels of service quality in privacy protection to improve Queensland medical and health service capabilities..
Economic benefit: 
  • Enabled more effective use of our existing network infrastructures to increase the productivity of network-centric businesses across a wide range of Queensland industries such as Telstra, Optus, Coles, Woolworths, BoQ, Suncorp and government sectors.
  • Enabled a wider range of medical and health service providers, industries, organizations and government agencies to share medical data securely and collaborate effectively with our information and networking technologies. 
  • Enabled to improve productivity of Queensland medical industries and supply chains in drug and medical equipment manufacture through more effective medical and health data sharing.
ROLE MODEL – Why do you think you are a good role model for women and girls aspiring to work in STEM? (max 500 words)

I grew up in a small town in China. My path to a top university in China was full of challenges. When I was young, my mum told me “If you don’t thrive to change your fate, you’ll be bounded to the small town for the whole life.” I believed no pain no gain, there is a vast world outside the town where I would put my footprint on.

I went to Xi’an, the capital city for 13 dynasties in Chinese history to study at one of best universities in China. I went to Japan with a full scholarship where I believe I can learn world-leading technology in a top Japanese national university. I went to UK and Australia to work in universities and experience different cultures. I then chose to return to Beijing to raise my two kids till their 8th and 6th age because I wanted them not to forget their home country. 

In every place of my footprint, I strived to be the best and build up a brilliant future. I received Excellent Graduate Award in Xi’an. In Japan, I received the Excellent PhD Graduate Medal for which my name was carved on university’s Medalist Wall. I received a permanent lecturer job offer from UK. In Beijing, I won the Excellent Young Academic Award and received competitive research grants.  I created a model for people surrounding me. With my positive influence, many girl students of mine developed creativity, confidence and adaptability in their career, and are now working in STEM in different countries.

My career was interrupted in 2008-2016 due to the birth of my two kids and care of them. During this period, I enriched my knowledge in different fields. I learnt a lot in education such as respect-based and motivation-driven teaching. My two kids, both attending in a top private school on a full scholarship, were benefited a lot from my education approach. I also devoted my time, care, patience to students because I believe every student’s life deserves a better future.

In 2018, I joined Griffith and developed two new courses and the Master of Cyber Security program. I was appointed as Computer Science (CS) Discipline Head in 2019 and successfully coordinated the reform of CS programs with two major changes. To respond to COVID-19 pandemic, I developed a fully online BCS program and attracted an increased enrolment by 30% in 2022. Our CS Discipline has been ranked top 100 in 3 consecutive years worldwide.  
In research, I published high impact research papers and received fundings from industries and QLD government. My recent work with GC University Hospital will benefit to vast data sharing with patients’ privacy preserved. I served as several international conferences’ program chair and journal editors to enhance our school’s external visibility and expand our collaboration network. 
I believe I am a female role model with my personality of reliability, faith, optimism and consistency, and my professionalism of dedication, efficiency and fairness as demonstrated in my above career journey.

ENGAGEMENT – Describe any STEM promotion or engagement activities that you have undertaken, including both scientific and non-scientific audiences, particularly with women and girls (maximum 500 words)

My engagement activities are listed as follows:
In 2021, I led the application of Women in STEM program and was granted $728,800 to support 50 female students (2022-2024) to transit to cybersecurity and data analysis areas. I will also teach cyber security fundamentals course to this female-only cohort.
In 2020 and 2021, I led a student voice committee and encouraged female students to attend as the student representatives and formed the committee with balanced gender (though less than 20% students are female overall in the school).
In 2019-2022, I have been a university mentor for students where I mentored 5 female students. I now also have one female PhD students and am the supervisor of three female staff in the school. 
In 2022, I was involved the cyber security skill partnership Innovation Fund where I will support and teach female students in cyber security training.
In 2021, I volunteered to work in Griffith projects to attract female high school students.
In 2021, I attended ACS (Australian Computer Society) “Qld IT Education and Career Event” and gave presentation for Griffith’s Computer Science program. I served as the panel member and interacted with audiences at the event.
In 2019, I hosted an international conference as the program chair and gave two talks in my research field. The conference provided lots of opportunities for 150+ attendees from more than 20 countries to connect with each other, including many female researchers.