14 March 2012

Professor Peter BuckskinThe University of South Australia is pleased to announce that Professor Peter Buckskin has been appointed as its inaugural Dean of Indigenous Scholarship, Engagement and Research, reporting directly to the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic, Professor Joanne Wright.

The new university-wide role has been designed to build upon and extend the work Professor Buckskin has been doing to enhance Indigenous cultural knowledge and research as Dean of the University’s David Unaipon College of Indigenous Education and Research in the Division of Education, Arts and Social Sciences.

In his new role, Professor Buckskin will also to work closely with UniSA College and its early engagement strategies in order to help more Indigenous students gain access to a wide range of professions.

Vice Chancellor of the University of South Australia, Professor Peter Høj says the position has been developed to focus on strategy development across the whole university in relation to a range of Indigenous scholarship, engagement and research issues.

“This new strategic role is a concrete reflection of how the University of South Australia remains committed to its founding principles to enhance educational outcomes for Indigenous people,” Prof Høj says.

“It acknowledges the continuing importance of Indigenous issues, and I am confident that it will enable us to deliver better outcomes for Indigenous people.”

Professor Buckskins says the new position provides better opportunities to support improved educational outcomes for Indigenous students and to support the value of Indigenous knowledge within the university’s teaching and research environment.

“It has been an honour to advocate on behalf of my people in the area of education, scholarship and research across the 30 years of my career in education,” Prof Buckskin says.

“To continue that work at UniSA in this new and exciting capacity is a privilege.

“UniSA is very fortunate to have a strong legacy of involvement in Indigenous education because it gives the institution a depth of understanding and experience.”

Professor Buckskin says a key priority will be to provide more opportunities for UniSA staff to learn more about Indigenous culture through an appreciation of Indigenous knowledge systems and experiences.

“This is an area that is still not well understood and there are great opportunities to develop scholarship and research and build expertise in these areas.

“I also want to make tangible inroads into our institutional aspirations for Indigenous students.

“That translates to ensuring more Indigenous students realise their capacity to share in the same opportunities afforded any other graduate of the university and, at the same time, to supporting their cultural strength.”

This new position will also allow Professor Buckskin to implement the $7.5 million More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Teachers Initiative (MATSITI) a four-year project he secured from the Australian Government in 2011.

Media contact

  • Michèle Nardelli office (08) 8302 0966 mobile 0418 823 673 email michele.nardelli@unisa.edu.au

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