Charters Towers high school students to taste uni life
First published January 24, 2014
Dozens of Year 10 students from Charters Towers will experience university life first-hand in Townsville next week, as part of a special residential camp being held at James Cook University.
Funded through the Australian Government’s Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program (HEPPP), JCU’s ‘Get into Uni’ Y10 Charters Towers Camp brings together students from four secondary schools in Charters Towers.
In all, 40 students from All Souls St Gabriels School, Blackheath and Thornburgh College, Charters Towers State High School and Columba Catholic College are participating. The camp is a result of collaborations between JCU, the Charters Towers Regional Council and school principals.
The free camp is offered by JCU for up to ten Year 10 students per school. This includes all accommodation, meals and travel expenses for each student attending.
Mikaela Dockrill, School Partnerships Coordinator from JCU’s Equity & Student Engagement Directorate, said students would be engaging with current JCU student ambassadors and university staff in an exciting range of activities.
“The activities will focus on raising aspiration to, and awareness of tertiary study, exploring course and subject areas and matching those with career aspirations,” Ms Dockrill said.
“There will also be team-building activities to build capacity for group work and social interaction with peers to build social skills and confidence.”
Associate Director Emma Thomas said the Y10 camps had been extremely successful in building students’ awareness of university opportunities, so that they could make informed choices about their future education and career pathways.
“Past participants from similar camps say they have greater commitment to their studies and are focused on getting to university,” Ms Thomas said.
Ms Thomas said collaboration with, and support from Charters Towers Regional Council and school principals was critical to JCU linking effectively with regional communities. Camps were one activity that had received excellent feedback from school principals, teachers and parents, she said.
“We see a positive difference in students’ beliefs about university and perhaps the start of a culture shift, where camp participants have become role models to their peers.
“They take on ‘JCU school ambassador’ roles when they return to school and community, which they are delighted with and which gives them a voice and responsibility to share their new knowledge and experiences with their peers. It is wonderful to be a part of making this happen.”
Charters Towers Mayor Frank Beveridge said the council and other regional centres had a central role to play in engaging with universities.
“I am very happy to be involved in assitsting in creating outcomes for the students of Charters Towers and in North Queensland,” Cr Beveridge said.
“We have a big future with regional cetnres such as ours and JCU in educating our students and supporting them onto university pathways. These ongoing collaborations will positively affect the whole region.”
For interviews, contact Mikaela Dockrill on (07) 4781 6493 or 0437 117 129
JCU Media contact: Caroline Kaurila (07) 4781 4586 or 0437 028 175