About the college
UTS to build Australia’s first Indigenous residential college
Professor Michael McDaniel: At UTS we’ve found models that work in relation to every single area of Indigenous interest and we’re committed to sharing those across the sector. I think in that way UTS is perfectly positioned to have a national impact in relation to Indigenous higher education.
The majority of Aboriginal people at the moment don’t have a history of a university education and the idea of a career as such, doesn’t often exist.
We’re particularly excited about the concept of UTS establishing Australia’s first university Indigenous residential college. So for the first time in Australian history, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people will be able to choose a College that has a celebration of their own identity, their own culture, their own traditions at its heart.
Marlee Silva: We’re really privilege here because UTS already does a great job of interacting Indigenous perspectives into our curriculum. I think the College though will take it that next step further. To have a space that’s really your own, and where we’re the hosts to everyone else.
Professor Attila Brungs: At this college we'll have Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians coming together in an environment of absolute excellence; mentored by the community around them. And for the first time ever in Australia, and one of the few times in the world, this hothouse of talent will be connected right across Australia and overtime we’ll have thousands of graduates making a real difference in our society.
Adam Goodes: The students that are going to be coming to this college and having the benefit of getting a university degree; they’re going to be role models. Whether they know it or not, they're leaders, they’re showing to their siblings back home that going to university is the normal thing we do in our family.
Marlee Silva: As a society we're at a point in history where we need to make a decision about what our future looks like. And in this instance, and I think more and more people are realising everyday, that in order for us to have a successful future and to have a strong national identity that unites all people, we need to start with our first people.
Adam Goodes: Higher education can increase the life expectancy of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It increases the money that they can earn in their career, and most importantly that connection to identity and culture.
Marlee Silva: The greatest honour of my life is to be able to say I’m an Aboriginal woman and I think that’s what this college is going to exude in every fibre.
This space is going to be so important because it’s not only for Aboriginal people but it’s a meeting place for Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australia. And we can all celebrate the founding culture of this nation together.
Attila Brungs: The whole focus of the college is around a strengths-based approach. But in doing so, it will absolutely close some of the gaps we have. We know, we have proven that higher education and access to higher education erases disadvantage.
Adam Goodes: We need those classroom educators that are going out there and studying law, studying engineering, all the courses that traditionally Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples haven’t gone into. We’re now breaking down those barriers for those students in creating environments like the college we’re creating here at UTS.
Attila Brungs: The college is not a building, it’s a community and it will be a lifelong community for a social purpose.
We acknowledge the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation upon whose ancestral lands our campus now stands. We acknowledge elders both past and present and recognise the contribution that Indigenous people make to the academic and cultural life of the university.