Ethno-Cultural Students

Lorena White

National Ethno-Cultural Officer

ethno-cultural@nus.asn.au

Ethno-Cultural Student Experience Survey

The survey will run throughout semester one following O-Weeks, allowing students to settle in and to enable engagement with a broad cross section of students.

The survey will be conducted online and I am currently engaging with campus Ethno-cultural representatives, collectives and clubs as well as student organisations more generally to utilise as many mailing lists as possible to distribute the survey.

Poster artwork to promote engagement with the survey will be provided to anyone interested to display on campus.

The survey will collect a range of information including ethnic and linguistic diversity, access to income support, educational background, course area studied, experiences of racism and discrimination both within their discipline, their university and the community, awareness of university cultural services and awareness of Ethno-cultural representation on a university level.

The findings of the survey will be released with recommendations in the ‘Ethno-cultural state of the Union’ report in semester two.

Ethno-Cultural Campus Resources and Representation Audit

Similarly, I plan to conduct an audit into the services and representation available to ethno-cultural students across Australia over semester one with its outcomes also presented in the ‘Ethno-cultural state of the Union’ report.

The audit will create a register of what representation exists for Ethno-cultural students within campus student organisations and university administrations, what services are available to specifically assist CALD students, if any cultural sensitivity or diversity training is provided to student activists and representatives as well as university and student organisation staff, and the presence of any Ethno-cultural/CALD/POC clubs or collectives on campus.

The audit will also be useful in the creation of a national Ethno-cultural student contact directory that will list the details of as many Ethno-cultural related organisations and reps as possible to enable networking and assistance where required. The directory will also contain the details of Ethno-cultural student activists who wish to participate in the NUS National Ethno-cultural department phone linkups that will occur twice a semester.

‘Racism is…’ photo campaign

The photo campaign will commence at O-weeks and continue throughout the year. It will consist of a Facebook page that will display the messages of students who wish to convey their experiences of racism and what it means to them. The messages will be a mixture or graphic quotes, students holding signs and any other creative expression students wish to share.

The campaign aims to provide Ethno-cultural students with a platform to express what racism and discrimination means to them from their personal experience. The campaign acts as a public platform to spread awareness of experiences of racism and discrimination in a more personal and engaging way in order to ensure that the people who experience racism are the ones who define it and lead the conversations and campaigns to tackle it, allowing others to be informed and active allies.

The campaign also hopes to foster a better dialogue between Ethno-cultural and non-Ethno-cultural students in order to encourage more sensitivity and the celebration – rather than misunderstanding - of diversity.

I am currently organising for the campaign to be run at stalls at as many O-weeks as possible – please let me know if you know someone who would like to help!

Multicultural Calendar

The many diverse diaspora and community groups in Australia celebrate a range of national, religious and cultural days and festivals or significance which are crucial to the maintenance of their culture and the formation of their identity. It is important that the university environment is one which supports the observance of these significant days.

The creation of a multicultural calendar as a publically available google calendar will allow student organisations to plan celebratory events, provide extra support, and be aware of particular sensitivities on certain days.

A .pdf file with each day as a single page describing that day’s significance to relevant cultures will also be provided so that it can be displayed on campus to help students be more aware of other cultures.

The calendar will be distributed in hardcopy during Presidents’ summit as well as electronically to campus organisations.

You can find the Racism Is campaign material here

National Executive Reports:

National Executive 1 - January

National Executive 2 - February

National Executive 3 - March