Horace Hill and Ashley Marino represented the School of Indigenous Studies and UWA at the 6th University Scholars Leadership Symposium in Hong Kong in 2015. This Symposium is held annually in a developing country in the Asia Pacific region to discuss, learn and talk about human rights. 850 students attended the symposium representing about 56 different countries including USA, Ukraine, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Indonesia, UK, France, Austria, Germany and Australia.
Horace Hill, a 3rd year Political Science and International Relations major commented that “It was an excellent chance to network and talk to people, learn about other cultures and gain an insight as to how they viewed the world. For me, the most inspiring speaker was Geraldine Cox, an Australian woman who runs several orphanages in Cambodia to support the children and families who still suffer after the civil war. I found that the speech from Gigi Chao was very supporting as they both identified that everyone, not just university students, had the ability to make a change.”
“I will admit after coming away from this experience, seeing and learning everything I did, I have taken a more proactive stance on doing things. I am now actively taking part in society through community organisations. But one of the biggest things that I have taken away from the Symposium was the recognition that I have the ability to make a change.“
Ashley Marino, Science student majoring in Marine Science from Albany believes that “It was a rare opportunity to be surrounded by so many cultures while being connected to everyone through similar passions or those that had experienced similar adversities. It has broadened my perspective to consider the livelihoods other people have to endure purely because they live in poorer or corrupt countries without any easy escape. After graduating from university I plan to travel and volunteer abroad to help however I can so other young people may receive the same education and career opportunities that I have been offered. This put into perspective how lucky I am to be safe and an educated young woman. The determination and passion of the speakers and other delegates is contagious, and can definitely help provide inspiration for young students who may doubt their potential.”
This is just one of many of the opportunities provided with assistance from the School of Indigenous Studies to Indigenous students at UWA; many taking up student exchange, while others have been selected for the Indigenous student mobility programs which involve cultural experiences overseas, the most recent in Bali.
Gabrielle Garratt (UWA School of Indigenous Studies) (+61 8) 6488 2467
Jess Reid (UWA Media and Public Relations) (+61 8) 6488 6876 / (+61 4) 13 105 200