More than 30 Indigenous Year 12 students from across WA are attending a leadership seminar at The University of Western Australia this week, which aims to encourage them to aspire to a tertiary education and learn about the opportunities available at UWA.
The Year 12 students come from Perth, Albany, Broome, Hedland, Kalgoorlie, Karratha, Kununurra and Tom Price.
For some, it is their first visit to UWA, but many are already familiar with the campus, having visited during high school as part of the School of Indigenous Studies (SIS) High School Outreach Program.
UWA SIS Student Services Officer Brendon DeGois said the program was important because it created an awareness among year 12 Indigenous students of the support services available to them and the different entry pathways for studying at UWA.
“Some students in the past may not have had the opportunities to be able to finish year 12, let alone gain a tertiary education,” Mr DeGois said.
“As part of the University’s outreach program, we want to change the perception that a University education is difficult to attain, and help students pursue their dream careers at UWA.”
The students this week will visit various UWA faculties across the campus and the colleges affiliated with the University, home to many Indigenous students.
They met UWA Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Community and Engagement), Professor Kent Anderson, and staff from the SIS at a morning tea today and listened to a motivational presentation from successful Indigenous law graduate and Labor candidate for Swan, Tammy Solonec.
Since 1988 the School of Indigenous Studies has helped nearly 350 Indigenous students to graduate in fields such as medicine, dentistry, engineering, law, health science, sports science, business and the arts.