William Cooper Institute

The William Cooper Institute (WCI) provides University-wide support to prospective and existing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, coordinates key Indigenous programs, activities and initiatives, and engages in shaping policy and practices across Monash and beyond. WCI connects research, learning and engagement for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and communities across and within the University through the establishment of a ‘hub-and-spoke’ model of Indigenous leadership and participation. It also oversees the development of targeted strategies to increase the participation of Indigenous students across the country, implements comprehensive engagement programs with secondary schools, and strengthens connections with Indigenous community-controlled organisations, to build greater awareness of the University’s educational offerings, pathways, entry schemes, scholarships and support programs.

To mark the 2021 National Close the Gap day on 18 March, WCI hosted a live Zoom discussion to reflect on how Monash and other organisations can effectively respond to Indigenous Communities voices in meaningful and culturally respectful ways. Monash hosted Indigenous students from other universities for events and activities during National Reconciliation week 2021. The Indigenous Traineeship Program continued in 2021 for new trainees commencing their graduate certificate-level qualification. The two-year program provides trainees with structured rotations across the University, with a view to secure ongoing positions for participants at the completion of the traineeship.