Warming to university at the first JCU Winter School
Queensland’s first Winter School for Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Students is giving high school students a taste of university life at James Cook University.
Approximately 100 students from around Australia, including the Torres Strait, Mornington Island, Dajarra, Melbourne, Canberra, and Darwin, are in Townsville as part of the program, which is the first of its kind in Queensland.
Over five days, students are living on campus and participating in lectures and activities that provide opportunities to meet with University staff and students, and to form bonds with other students in the program.
The program provides vital experience and knowledge for students to make the best decisions when choosing their final subject in high school and for making the leap into tertiary education.
Professor Martin Nakata, Pro Vice Chancellor, Indigenous Education and Strategy, has seen first-hand the benefits of similar programs held interstate.
“The Winter School residential program provides students with real classes and puts them into real situations, educationally and socially that they may face in their first years of university,” he said.
“We have seen that when they face these situations in a controlled, supportive environment the likelihood of the students starting, thriving and graduating is significantly higher than those who haven’t participated in a program like this.”