The LEAP Macquarie Mentoring Program from the Widening Participation department, under the PVC office of Learning, Teaching and Diversity, aims to assist high school students of refugee backgrounds in navigating their pathways in higher education and future careers. It is a unique program allowing Macquarie University students to connect with high school students as fellow students, in a friendly and welcoming environment.
One of the 11 weeks of the program is dedicated to a University Experience Day event that is held on the Macquarie University Ryde campus. On the 23rd of May, the LEAP Macquarie Mentoring Program held the University Experience Day for 120 mentees, from seven different Western and South-Western Sydney High Schools, including Blacktown Girls High School, Blacktown Boys High School, Evans High School, Bankstown Senior College, Arthur Phillip High School, Auburn Girls High School and Miller Technology High School.
The University Experience Day is a culmination of the information discussed in the sessions leading up to the event. It allows the mentors to show their mentees the day-to-day life of a University student, whilst showcasing the facilities University has to offer during the campus tours. This event is a bonding experience for mentors and mentees alike.
The day consisted of a welcome-to-country by Lexodious Dadd. JoAnne Sparks, University Librarian, welcomed the schools to our campus, with a heart-warming speech discussing her experiences working with students in Burma. Joanne Jamie and Shaan Floyd of the Department of Chemistry & Biomolecular Sciences coordinated a fantastically enjoyable Science Show for the mentees.
Ruth Tregale joined the event, representing as Manager of Widening Participation, alongside Robert Ephraums, Coordinator of the Program, Hina Khan and Vivienne Lam, representing the LEAP Macquarie Mentoring Program, participated in supporting the event.