AIME Western Sydney celebrates a successful year
11 November 2008
Thirty five students from six schools across the region graduated from Western Sydney's Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME) program in 2008. To mark the occasion AIME celebrated with a farewell lunch and graduation ceremony.
The impact that the University student mentoring program has on the year nine and ten students was clear when mentee Alkira Adridge spoke on behalf of the students. 'I'd like to thank the mentors for giving up their time to be here each week. AIME has given me more confidence and I'm even considering Uni after year 12 now.'
Indigenous mentor Fiona Webb echoed these sentiments saying that early intervention is so important and she wished the AIME program had been around when she was at high school. David Henningham spoke of his experience as a non-Indigenous mentor stating, 'I don't think it matters that I'm not Indigenous because we are pretty much all the same. I worked with some great guys this year and this has probably been the best experience I've had at Uni.'
Following the speeches all students received a graduation certificate, a copy of the Hip Hop CD they had produced as an arts project during the program, and a special AIME t-shirt featuring the slogan 'Yeah Braa.'
Program Manager Clark Webb closed the day by congratulating both the mentors and mentees for their achievements during the year and thanking the high school staff who gave their time to bring the students to Cumberland Campus once a week for the program.
Wrapping up Clark said, 'We only had two Indigenous Uni student mentors in the program this year. That says that there are still not enough of our young people going to uni. I was the same as you guys, all I wanted to do was play footy but it's a matter of having an education as well. Knuckle down and get into your work!'
This year's program involved 50 student mentors from across the University of Sydney, with 35 representatives from Health Sciences. If you would like to sign up to be a mentor in 2009 email Clark Webb at firstname.lastname@example.org. To find out more about AIME visit the website.
Contact: Michelle Cario
Phone: 02 9036 7486