23 June 2020

ATN welcomes the Federal Government’s guarantee of a bachelor degree place at any university for Indigenous students from regional and remote areas, announced as part of the higher education reform package.

It is important that these students are given the opportunity to study at the campus that best fits their education and career path.

One third of Indigenous students at ATN universities are originally from regional and remote areas, and this provides more opportunities for current and prospective students.

“ATN has always been strongly committed to equity and participation across all our campuses – both metropolitan and regional,” said ATN Executive Director Luke Sheehy.

Improving education attainment through access to university is one of the most effective tools in closing the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

“Evidence shows that opportunity at higher education is one of the greatest ways we can close the gap on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander disadvantage.

“Students going through school now will know that they will be guaranteed a place if they have earned it – that’s excellent motivation and support,” said Luke Sheehy.

This announcement will build on existing ATN initiatives such as:

  • The Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research at University of Technology Sydney. The Jumbunna Institute offers specialised support for Indigenous students and has research hubs in areas important to Indigenous communities.
  • Curtin University’s Centre for Aboriginal Studies. An Indigenous-managed research and education centre that contributes to positive social change for Aboriginal Australians
  • The RMIT Ngarara Willim Centre which provides specialist services and support for Indigenous students from the initial application and interview stages to orientation and commencement, and throughout their time at RMIT.
  • The University of South Australia’s Aboriginal Pathway Program (APP). A one and a half year program that supports students with no previous qualifications for university study. The program is open to all people who identify as Aboriginal and can lead to entry into a university degree at the University of South Australia.

ATN’s commitment to social justice and equity means that we always support measures that increase access to higher education, no matter their background or circumstance. ATN looks forward to welcoming more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students onto our campuses.