Celebrating 30 Years 2016-2017: History Project


The Oorala Aboriginal Centre celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2016–17. Founded in 1986, Oorala has been a focal point for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education at UNE, having grown from a relatively small centre, located in a demountable, to a modern purpose-built support and education centre that provides services to over 740 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students on-campus and online today.

In order to commemorate the Centre’s achievements and highlight the contribution its students and staff have made to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, education and UNE, Oorala has received funding to conduct research into the history of the Centre.

The research project will focus on:

  • Development and changes to the Centre’s function and programs;
  • Contributions from leading staff members;
  • Notable achievements by UNE Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students/alumni;
  • Recognition of Oorala’ contribution to education, internally and nationally;
  • Improvements to infrastructure and student services; and
  • A profile of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander student body and UNE course offerings.

Research outcomes

The outcomes of the research will inform:

  1. The creation of a catalogue of Oorala historical documents, including key facts, photos and publications and other material that may inform future editions of the “Oorala history”.
  2. The drafting of a publication telling the story of Oorala, its staff and students.
    1. The publication will draw on available archival material, publications, images, interviews with former and current staff and students.
    2. The publication’s launch will coincide with the 30th anniversary celebrations.
  3. The creation of “story boards” and an online resource
    1. “Story-boards” to be displayed publicly as part of our Celebrating 30 Years Oorala Art Exhibition in October / November 2017.
    2. The story boards will aim to capture the history of Oorala in pictures and text, reflecting the various stages Oorala went through and include a board of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander UNE Alumni.
    3. Story-boards will be produced in a physical form (e.g. pull-up banners) and as an online resource.

Key contacts

Mr Gregory Davison, Director, Oorala Aboriginal Centre

E: gdaviso2@une.edu.au

P: 6773 5824

Mr Guido Posthausen, Academic Coordinator, Oorala Aboriginal Centre

E: gpostha2@une.edu.au

P: 6773 3439