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Campus celebrates opening of Nyombil support centre

Bond University officially opened the Nyombil Indigenous support centre on September 11, 2012, bringing together community members, elders, students and University staff to celebrate Indigenous life on campus.

The Centre, created to provide support for Bond’s Indigenous community, offers the services of an Indigenous Cultural Support Officer who assists Bond’s Indigenous students with the unique challenges they may face in moving from remote communities and undertaking the new challenge of University study.

Bond University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Tim Brailsford will join guests including the Gold Coast Titans, representatives from Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME) and distinguished local elders including Narelle Urquhart who is employed by the University as support for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.

Bond University Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor Mr Alan Finch explained that by creating an environment where Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander students are able to thrive, Bond University is ensuring the Indigenous community enjoys university life as much as any other student.

“Making the switch from high school to University is challenging for any young person. Our Indigenous students experience unique challenges in particular related to cultural differences and moving away from home,” said Mr Finch.

“The purpose of a dedicated centre is to provide our Indigenous students with a home away from home space where students can drop in for a chat with newly appointed Aunty, Narelle Urquhart, or gather with friends.

“We are very grateful to be able to have such a well-respected mentor available to the students at Bond University,” he said.

The Nyombil Centre is equipped with a computer, kitchen and lounges where students can catch-up, study or relax.  Narelle, a local Aboriginal artist, currently meets with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community on a weekly basis.

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