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10 April 2015

Inside the new ETLCThirty three UniSA students will graduate in Whyalla today, on a day which will also mark the opening of a new Engineering Teaching and Learning Centre (ETLC) and the unveiling of an official Acknowledgement of Country Plaque at the campus.

UniSA Vice Chancellor Professor David Lloyd and Elliott McNamara: Chairperson, Barngarla Aboriginal Corporation, will unveil a plaque that formally acknowledges the Barngarla people as the traditional owners of the land on which the Whyalla campus is located, while UniSA Head of the School of Engineering, Professor Peter Majewski, will open the ETLC.

Dr Laura-Anne Bull, UniSA Pro Vice Chancellor: Student Engagement and Equity says the day will highlight UniSA’s strengths in delivering educational opportunities to all students, while at the same time acknowledging students’ success and the importance of regional communities.

“Graduation is what all the hard work has been about. Our students have made it and are about to take their next steps in life’s journey,” Dr Bull says.

“For most of our graduates here in Whyalla, the next step will be to give back to their regional community, becoming the next generation of nurses, social workers, schools teachers and engineers.”

“This is a very special time and our graduates should be proud of their achievements.”

The new ETLC will create opportunities for those in Whyalla and surrounding communities to pursue Engineering and STEM activities on campus. Jointly funded by UniSA and OneSteel Arrium Mining, the ETLC houses a general purpose engineering laboratory, a 3D design studio, an engineering workshop and an engineering learning centre.

Prof Majewski says the new ETLC also builds on the concept of Regional Interactive classrooms (RIC), enabling students to engage with teaching staff and other students in a virtual classroom in real time.

“Given that many engineering students at Whyalla work in industry, some that require travel, RIC allows them to call in to the virtual classroom from anywhere in the world,” Prof Majewski says.

“The ETLC enables the School of Engineering to deliver synchronous teaching via highly interactive virtual classrooms, expanding the number of enrolments to accommodate and the diverse range of potential students within Whyalla and the region. It is about bringing engineering education to the regions.

“UniSA College’s Connect Team is using the Centre to engage with Schools in the region to not only encourage and conduct STEM activities for students but also conduct professional development for teachers to empower them with STEM skills that they can bring to their classroom.”

 Media contact: Will Venn office (08) 8302 0096 email will.venn@unisa.edu.au

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