Racist cartoons, the Hottest 100 and the AFL – chances are if you’ve heard about an Indigenous issue in the media recently, it’s probably been a shouting match over a controversy. With these issues slamming the headlines, it can be easy for Indigenous voices to get lost in the noise and even easier to lose sight of everyday Indigenous people forging their own paths.
Enter thirteen Indigenous students from Charles Sturt University.
The CSU FirstDegree Program has teamed up with Desert Pea Media to create a powerful and seriously sleek video which explores the Indigenous student journey from the perspective of students who are the first from their families to attend university.
The Front Line premiers here exclusively with The Vocal and we’re super excited about it.
Check it out:
I went in blind, I took a risk, I left country, I jumped in the deep end… I could have drowned but I chose to swim.
Navigating university life for the first time can be a horror at the best of times (just try finding your classroom with a six digit code which looks like it could unlock a nuclear weapon). Yet these students have the added difficulty of being the first person in their entire families to be setting foot in university and must contend with the added burden of stigma.
The diverse set of students range from fresh-faced school leavers to middle-aged mums who spit rhymes in their spare time and hail from different Indigenous groups around the country.
With the blessing of Wiradyuri Elder Kalmadyne Goombyge, these students are leading a new generation of Indigenous students embracing education and taking Indigenous disadvantage into their own hands.
As Marley Blair acknowledges, “the bottom line is this: only 40 per cent of our mob finish high school, seven out of 10 of our young people will end up in jail, and there’s only one way to make change for my people and that’s to do it myself.”