Australia

'Bush university' graduates from Arnhem Land begin studies in Sydney

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Indigenous students have come from Ngukurr in southern Arnhem Land to start their tertiary studies in Sydney. Most of them had never left their home before.

Beginning next week, 13 Indigenous students from Ngukurr, Arnhem Land, will embark on their university studies at Macquarie University in Sydney.

The students recently graduated from a six-week 'Bush university' trial, located on the outstation of Wuyagiba in Ngukarr, in the remote Northern Territory.

'Bush university' participant Melissa Andrews-Wurramarrba hopes to become the first Indigenous teacher in the Ngukurr community when she graduates with a bachelor degree in primary education.

Melissa Andrews-Wurramarrba wishes to become a primary school teacher
Melissa Andrews-Wurramarrba wants to be the first Indigenous primary school teacher in her community.
NITV News

“I want to take everything that I am going to learn here and teach my younger generations back home,” she told NITV News.

In their local community of Ngukurr, there are limited opportunities to pursue higher education.

“Sydney is really different from my community, the buildings, the environment. But I guess coming here ... we have the trees that remind me of home and the lake down there reminds me of the big lake back home,” Ms Andrews-Wurramarrba said.

She hopes her decision to complete university will inspire the younger generation in her town.

Students from Arnhem Land will travel to Sydney for university.
Students from Arnhem Land will travel to Sydney for university.
SBS News

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