A record number of Indigenous students have graduated from Nura Gili's Winter School at UNSW this week.
One hundred and fifty students enrolled in the pre-university program, the largest intake in the eight year history of the School.
The students, from years 10, 11 and 12, were welcomed to the University by Aboriginal activist and UNSW Professor Pat Dodson.
This year, the Nura Gili Indigenous Programs Centre received more than 500 applications for the residential school, which prepares Indigenous pupils from across Australia for tertiary study.
Associate Professor Sue Green, Nura Gili Director, believes the school not only encourages students to consider tertiary education but provides them with the skills and support necessary to complete their university education.
"Our Indigenous graduation rates are almost on a par with non-Indigenous students," said Green. "The strength of our preparatory programs, combined with the ongoing support provided to our Indigenous students, are essential to achieving this."
Students travelled from remote and rural areas across Australia to attend the Winter School where they were introduced to their chosen discipline: Social Work, Education, Medicine, Engineering, Law, Architecture and Design, Commerce and Economics or Visual Arts and Performing Arts.
Zana Sampton, 17, travelled from Townsville for the third year running to attend the program.
"I really want to be a teacher, so I study education every time I come. The Winter School has given me the confidence to apply for university," said Zana.
Global financial firm, UBS, a founding partner of Nura Gili, has invested $1 million over four years to support the preparatory courses.
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