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ILC partners with Bond University to grow Indigenous tourism

Indigenous tourism received a significant boost this week with the announcement of three full scholarships to study Tourism Management at Bond University on the Gold Coast.

Australia’s leading private, not-for-profit university has partnered with the Indigenous Land Corporation (ILC) to provide three full scholarships valued at $115,000 each covering full tuition fees, accommodation and meals for the two-year programs. 

Indigenous tourism is a growing industry which is injecting millions of dollars into local communities and the wider Australian economy.

ILC Acting General Manager Jodie Lindsay said the Indigenous scholarships will help Indigenous communities and groups to build profitable and sustainable businesses.

“The ILC’s purpose is to assist Indigenous people with land acquisition and land management to achieve economic, environmental, and cultural benefits.  Ensuring young Indigenous people have access to an education that helps them build a secure and sustainable future is a key priority for the ILC,” said Ms Lindsay.

“We believe the tourism industry has a bright future and offers Indigenous people a wide range of training and employment opportunities.

“The ILC is developing a world-class eco-tourism facility at the gateway to the iconic Mossman Gorge in far north Queensland so we thought it was timely to provide tourism pathways for Indigenous people at the tertiary level.

“This is the first time the ILC has joined with a university to offer scholarships. We are excited about the opportunity this will provide to Indigenous students wanting to study tourism,” she said.

Bond University Vice-Chancellor Professor Robert Stable said the University was delighted to join with the ILC.

“These Indigenous scholarships reflect Bond University’s commitment to the community. We are a private, not-for-profit university that is a part of the community and here for the community. 

“We look forward to a long and prosperous partnership with the ILC to further develop Indigenous education, in particular in the tourism sector,” he said.

Bond University Head of School of Hotel, Resort and Tourism Management Professor Elizabeth Roberts said partnering with the ILC was a long-term vision for the future of the tourism industry. 

“This is a partnership never before seen in Australian tertiary institutions.  These scholarships will not only change the lives of these three students, but the communities they will return to.  Indigenous tourism is a growth industry that needs resources behind it if it is to flourish,” said Professor Roberts.

“These scholarships will provide three students with an understanding and appreciation for the tourism industry, financial acumen and asset management to operate a successful tourism business, and leadership skills to motivate and lead a team.

“The School of Hotel, Resort and Tourism Management recently celebrated its first birthday and already our unique curriculum and global network are making the industry sit up and take notice of our School.

“We found there was a skills-gap in tertiary education that HRTM students were not being taught these vital asset management skills.  Many other programs focus on the vocational skills required to operate front of house, or perform a specific duty.  We developed our curriculum to prepare our students for the ‘top’ jobs,” she said.

Applications for the indigenous scholarships close at the end of March with class starting in May of this year.  Those interested in learning more about the scholarships should call 1800 074 074 or visit

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