14 May 2015
A breakfast of 260 people celebrating equity initiatives for students and a twilight seminar by Queensland’s Anti-Discrimination Commissioner will feature at the University of the Sunshine Coast’s first annual Diversity Week from 25-29 May.
Themed “The Diversity of Us” to reflect inclusion, five days of activities on campus at Sippy Downs will focus on the benefits of encouraging diversity at USC and across the wider community.
The week will bring together related national awareness days as students, staff and interested members of the public discuss issues and enjoy events and entertainment from a “roaming art canvas” created by USC Occupational Therapy students to a “free barbecue of worldly flavours” hosted by the USC Student Guild.
A highlight will be the Vice-Chancellor’s Diversity Week Breakfast on Monday 25 May, when Professor Greg Hill will launch initiatives such as his new annual Equity and Diversity Awards, to be presented in 2016 as part of USC’s 20-year anniversary.
“Diversity enriches our personal, professional, academic and social lives,” Professor Hill said.
“This University is committed to the principles of equity and freedom from discrimination in employment and education. Diversity Week 2015 will showcase the contributions of our students, staff and alumni and encourage creative conversations about equity and inclusion.”
The breakfast also will be addressed by Alan Le May, Queensland General Manager of The Smith Family, which partners with USC to assist school students at Nambour, Maroochydore and Burnside.
It is fully booked for 260 people, including school principals and community representatives, at the USC Innovation Centre auditorium from 8-9am.
Tuesday 26 May, which is National Sorry Day, will feature a keynote speech at 10.15am by Aunty Judi Wickes, the granddaughter of two Stolen Generation children and a social worker who was a member of the original Sorry Day Committee.
The USC Student Law Society will present a seminar with Queensland Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Kevin Cocks AM from 4-6pm on Tuesday.
Mr Cocks will present his experiences and the state of diversity in Australia before answering questions on the topic of “Diversity and Equity in Everyday Life”.
On Wednesday 27 May, a panel discussion on human rights from 4-6pm will include academics from the Curtin University Centre for Human Rights Education, including author and Emeritus Professor Jim Ife, alongside USC Indigenous Studies Lecturer Dr Debra Dank. It will be presented by USC’s Social Work discipline.
At lunchtime on Wednesday, students will flock to the Uni Club for the free “worldly flavours” barbecue from 11am to 2pm.
Twilight markets at the USC Gallery on Thursday 28 May from 6-8pm will offer music, stalls and Soap Box, following a presentation by the USC Ally Network in Building E from 2-4pm on sexuality and gender identity.
Daily activities will include interactive displays by USC’s Buranga Centre at the Brasserie, Indonesian cultural displays by the USC Bahasa Community, Turkish food and conversation, and sports like wheelchair basketball at the USC Stadium.
For details go to the web page or email Student Equity and Diversity Adviser Marj Blowers on firstname.lastname@example.org
— Julie Schomberg