Students celebrate year of AIME-ing high
Keira High students Alana and Abigail weren’t too sure about University when they signed up to be part of the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME). Now, as AIME wraps up for 2012, the pair have plans for good grades and graduation firmly in place.
The girls are just two examples of the success of the program, which has been run at UOW in partnership with the University and Woolyungah Indigenous Centre since 2008.
While enjoying the AIME end of year presentation and celebration held last week, Alana said she planned to apply for an ATAR and hoped to come to UOW to study Indigenous History.
Abigail said she had enjoying visiting the campus through the program and had been inspired to pursue a teaching degree at university.
“I would really like to study to teach children with disabilities,” she said.
“I’m looking forward to coming to uni. It’s definitely not as scary as I thought it would be- I know it’s going to be a lot of fun.”
The six-year mentoring program for Indigenous Australian students runs from Year 7 through to 12. AIME partners high school students with university student volunteers in a one-on-one mentoring relationship for an hour a week over the course of a 17-week program.
AIME’s goals are to improve Year 10 and 12 completion rates as well as university admission rates for all participating students.
Apart from the impact AIME is having on Indigenous high school students, it offers a significant opportunity for Indigenous and non-Indigenous university students to gain invaluable experience working with Indigenous high school students as well as encouraging the development of long-term partnerships between local high schools and the university.
UOW was the first university outside of Sydney to take on the program and encourages all students to participate as volunteers and mentors.
To find out more about the program visit the AIME website.
By Jenna Bradwell