News & Events

Transforming through Praxis: Students from Refugee Backgrounds in Higher Education

Event Details
Council Room, Industry Development Centre, The University of Newcastle Australia, Callaghan NSW
20 November 2015 8:56 am

The Centre of Excellence for Equity in Higher Education (CEEHE) at the University of Newcastle (UON) is proud to announce its inaugural one-day symposium on students from refugee backgrounds in higher education. The symposium will feature Senator Sarah Hanson Young and several presentations/workshops facilitated by academics, educators and practitioners from across Australia.

This symposium has been developed out of a UON community of interest, exploring how students from refugee backgrounds experience, access and engage in their undergraduate studies. It is connected to two ongoing studies:

1) A CEEHE-funded project exploring the experiences of access and belonging of students from refugee backgrounds in higher education; and

2) An Office for Teaching and Learning (OLT)-funded, multi-partner project looking at the pathways of students from refugee backgrounds into and through higher education from three different departure points: TAFE–enabling–undergraduate pathways (UON); school–university pathways (Macquarie University) and Intensive English Centre (IEC)–university pathways (Curtin University).

The funding of these two projects, along with two other recent OLT-funded projects, suggests that students from refugee backgrounds, who have experienced forced migration and who have different language and cultural backgrounds, are an under-represented equity group deserving of further support and consideration.

From these rich conversations, we hope to be able to grow our community of interest in students from refugee backgrounds nationally, and maintain our compassion and energy for groups of people who are pilloried by political parties and often misunderstood and made invisible in and by the academy.

We are also pleased to be able to offer 5 x $200 travel grants to Research Higher Degree students and/or casual staff members to encourage broad attendance of people who work with and are interested in this area.

The symposium is free to attend, however registrations are essential for catering purposes. Please RSVP by email to or via telephone on (02) 4921 6817.

Posted 30 October 2015