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Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu

As Australia’s first university and as an iconic tertiary institution, the University of Sydney takes seriously its commitment to being a positive change agent in Australia.

In 2011, the University launched Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu, our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander higher education strategy, to expand Aboriginal education, research and engagement to become part of the core activity of the University.

The Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu is a commitment to working together to respect and empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and perspectives as an integral part of our University community.

Learn more about the University-wide Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu strategy.

At the University of Sydney Business School, we are proudly engaged with the Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu strategy, through which we aim to enrich Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation, engagement, education and research. Already we have seen the start of a wonderful process of connecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and perspectives to our Business School, the University and our nation’s vibrant identity.

The Business School has been contributing to the realisation of the Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu strategy in a number of ways, including working with High School students, engaging with communities, and supporting the learning of our own Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students enrolled in undergraduate and postgraduate programs.

Business School learning support

As part of the Business School’s Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu strategy, we have a dedicated learning support officer for our Indigenous students who provides advice for individuals requiring academic support.

Contact: Heather Robson at heather.robson@sydney.edu.au

High school student programs

Wingara Mura Summer Program for High School Students

The University runs summer camps for Indigenous high school students with the aim of providing an opportunity for students to meet other like-minded young people, and to trial university life.

Wingara Mura Bunga Barrabugu Summer Program is a Compass Program. Compass is an initiative of the University of Sydney, a partner of Bridges to Higher Education, and funded by the Commonwealth Government HEPPP and donations to the University.

The Business School’s program includes:

Wingara Mura (A Thinking Path)

3 day program designed for younger pupils (years 9 and 10) considering studies beyond school

2014 Wingara Mura Summer Program

As a part of the pilot Wingara Mura Summer Program, we co-partnered in delivering an exciting program with the Faculty of Science and the Faculty of Agriculture and Environment. Students took part in interactive activities which provided them with the opportunity to observe businesses on campus and collect information about how businesses operate. Students learned how businesses make money, price their products and develop marketing strategies.
Read more about our 2014 Wingara Mura Summer Program.

2015 and 2016 Wingara Mura Summer Program

In 2015 and 2016, the Business School partnered with the Faculty of Agriculture and Environment on the ‘Get down to Business’ stream. The theme and purpose of the program centred on ‘the business of taking food from land to brand’.

In January, students looked at the use of native spices in food products, conducting sensory taste tests of the products and also conducting some basic market research with the general public. The final part of the day involved the students analysing the result of their research, and then developing a basic marketing campaign based on what they learnt from their research in order to brand and ultimately sell the products.

2017 Wingara Mura Summer Program

We partnered with Hello Social to give forty year 9 and 10 students a crash course in social media marketing. After an introduction to the Business School, students learned about the surprisingly complicated world of social media and new marketing trends. They gained technical skills in using Instagram for marketing purposes and visited several on-campus food vendors to create Instagram marketing campaigns in small groups. The campaigns were presented to expert judges at the end of the day.

Bunga Barrabugu (To Make Tomorrow)

5 day program designed for year 11 and 12 students which focuses on more specific areas of study

2014 Bunga Barrabugu Summer Program

During the Bunga Barrabugu Summer Program, students worked in groups to develop a more in depth business idea, and worked their way through the different aspects of business each day. Over the course of the week, they built a business plan and learned how to find the right people, market their business, source finance and operate in a practical business environment. Students shared their presentations at the end of the week.

The week long program included a series of lectures, field excursions and final presentations:

  • Day 1: Entrepreneurship and Strategy
  • Day 2: HR, Attraction, Culture and Training, including a visit to the Commonwealth Bank of Australia
  • Day 3: Marketing and Communications
  • Day 4: Accountability, Finance, Funding, Pricing and Reporting, including a visit to KPMG
  • Day 5: Presentations and graduation

2015 Bunga Barrabugu Summer Program

Over the course of a week in January students worked with the Business School to gain an understanding of business concepts in relation to real-life business. They also developed an understanding of how business spans across all aspects of life, regardless of industry or the type of work. We partnered with a community based organisation in Redfern called Tribal Warrior, to deliver the program.

Students worked on their primary product, a cultural boat tour, as well as explored the possibility of a new cultural walking tour. Students learned basic marketing principles, conducted market research into competitors and developed a basic marketing strategy to either improve the existing product offering or launch the new walking tour product. Students presented their strategies at the end of the week to a panel of judges, including Business School academics and representatives from Tribal Warrior.

At the end of the week, students demonstrated and gained experience in teamwork skills, communication and interpersonal skills, research skills, presentation skills, technology use and business and marketing skills.

2016 Bunga Barrabugu Summer Program

The Business School hosted eleven students, who considered the changing business world of eCommerce using The Iconic as a case-study.

Students developed an understanding of the fashion industry’s history and its current state with an increasing number of online retailers, as well as basic marketing and business model concepts. We travelled to The Iconic’s offices in Surry Hills for a site tour and to hear about emerging careers in the eCommerce space.

At the end of the week, students visited Broadway Shopping Centre to make short films that answered the question “Is it better to shop online?” Each of the two teams presented their film and argument to a judging panel consisting of the Business School’s Dean, Professor Greg Whitwell, and other academic staff.

Read more about our trip to The Iconic in A*STAR Magazine.

2017 Bunga Barrabugu Summer Program

Three teams of year 11 and 12 students spent four days at the Business School learning about social enterprise and entrepreneurship, marketing, and presentation skills. They visited The Big Issue to learn more about their operations and business model, and heard from refugee chefs who work with Culinary Tales. To put their new-found knowledge to the test, they were tasked with the challenge of coming up with a social enterprise to tackle youth unemployment in Australia. The final day of the program saw the teams pitch their idea to a panel of Business School judges.


For more information, view the event page.

Launch your career workshop

At the Business School, we are committed to working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to develop community businesses, starting with young people interested in business as a career.

The Business School’s Launch Your Business Career workshop is delivered in rural communities to promote the study of business and a career in business.

Initially developed for the Sydney metro area, the program was delivered regionally to Broken Hill as part of the Broken Hill Learning Week organised by the Social Inclusion Unit in June 2013. Six students enrolled in the Business School’s Placement Program in Broken Hill for the winter break, together with two academics, delivered workshops to around 200 high school students on the scope of business as a career, life at university, and scholarships available to study at the Business School, including the Inspired by Business Program – which helps students from all backgrounds gain access to the Business School for an undergraduate degree – and the BlueScope Indigenous Scholarship in Business.

In June 2014, the Business School again took part in the Broken Hill Learning Week. This time, a team of students and academics travelled to Broken Hill along with other representatives from the University, and ran an Applied Business Workshop for Year 10 and 11 students, a Year 12 Higher School Certificate Business Studies Workshop, and Teacher Professional Learning Workshop.

Community Placement Program

Established in December 2013, the Community Placement Program (CPP) provides both undergraduate and postgraduate students from across the Business School with the opportunity to work with indigenous communities on the development of social enterprises.

As a part of our Wingara Mura-Bunga Barrabugu programs, the Business School sent five CPP students to Alice Springs in April 2014 to work with the social enterprise, Akeyulerre.

Interrentye Traditional Healing Products is a social enterprise of Akeyulerre Healing Centre, created by young Arrernte women, with the help of the elders. The students worked with the Arrente community as well as Akeyulerre to develop a website, an online e-commerce strategy and a part-automated inventory management system, including training manuals.

A major aim of the project was to drive a strong improvement in sales and enable Interrentye to hire more local Arrente women.

40k Collaboration

40K (40k.com.au) is a social business collective whose mission is to make a positive impact in society through social enterprises, or what they like to call Good: Business. One such enterprise is 40K PLUS, which provides an after school English literacy and numeracy program in the rural villages surrounding Bangalore, India.

Building on the success of the program in India, the Business School is working with 40K to develop an after school literacy and numeracy program for rural and remote Aboriginal communities with the aim of supporting children’s learning to enable them to graduate successfully from school and to seek meaningful employment upon graduation.

The BlueScope Indigenous Scholarship in Business

BlueScope Steel Australia has donated $75,000 to the Business School for the establishment of a scholarship for an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander student. The total value of the Scholarship is $75,000 ($25,000 per annum), and will be awarded to a student enrolled on a fulltime basis in a Bachelor degree program.