Indigenous community leaders recognised as leading educators

Thursday, 5 Oct 2017

Charles Sturt University (CSU) has recognised the contributions of the Indigenous and wider community in Bathurst to its law, justice and policing degrees during a ceremony in September.

During a presentation to staff, community members, and Indigenous Elders, the Head of the Australian Graduate School of Policing and Security and the Centre for Law and Justice, Associate Professor Nick O'Brien, presented awards for excellence in teaching, research, leadership, community engagement, and impact at CSU in Bathurst.

Brian GrantRepresenting local Elders, Uncle Brian Grant (pictured left) and also known as 'Maliyan' (Eagle) in Wiradjuri, accepted the awards from Professor O'Brien.

"I've been with this program for two years," Uncle Brian said.

"It's an opportunity to work with Charles Sturt University students who are going to work for NSW Police and NSW Department of Community Services (DOCS).

"We give them an Aboriginal community perspective, while we can also let them know about how we function as a community.

"I have worked for the police force and for DOCS, so I have a good background. I think students like to get that insider information, that bit of foresight of what they are going to encounter later in their careers.

"Both the students and we Elders benefit through our community involvement, so from our point of view, we want to continue the program."

The Bathurst Wiradjuri Elders received their Teaching Excellence Award for their leadership and delivery of content to courses in the University's Centre for Law and Justice in Bathurst.

Centre Director, Associate Professor Alison Gerard, regards the awards as a practical demonstration of the University's commitment to forging links with the local community and in recognising the teaching expertise of Indigenous Elders.

"We wanted our students to learn from the Aboriginal Elders in our community, to provide them with the experience needed to work effectively within communities in their chosen professions," Professor Gerard said.

"Hearing directly from the Elders helps students understand the richness and resilience of Indigenous knowledge. This can only strengthen the Charles Sturt University law and criminal justice degrees."

Media contact: Bruce Andrews, 0418 669 362

Media Note:
For interviews with Associate Professor Alison Gerard, contact CSU Media.