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Indigenous higher education leader Professor Braden Hill welcomes participants from Advance HE’s Top Management Programme to Australia and outlines his vision for an ‘equity-minded’ approach to leadership

10 Jul 2023 | Advance HE The Edith Cowan University Deputy Vice Chancellor, pictured, was among a group of Aboriginal higher education leaders who welcomed a multi-national group and explained the approach Western Australian universities take to supporting Indigenous education, research and engagement.

An international group of senior higher education leaders received a Welcome to Noongar Country in Perth Western Australia today and learned how the region’s universities support Indigenous people, communities and cultures.

Professor Braden Hill who is Deputy Vice Chancellor (Students, Equity and Indigenous) at Edith Cowan University in Perth and who is himself a Wardandi Noongar man, led the session, advocating for an ‘equity-minded’ approach to leadership

He was joined by:

  • A/Professor Chanelle van den Berg, Pro Vice Chancellor First Nations, Murdoch University, Perth
  • Professor Dan McAullay, Dean Kurongkurl Katitjin/Director of Aboriginal Research at Edith Cowan University, and
  • Dr Roma Yibiyung Winmar, Edith Cowan University Elder-in-Residence.

Top Management Programme

The 33 senior higher education leaders were all taking part in the 48th and 50th cohort of Advance HE’s prestigious Top Management Programme (TMP).

The intensive, multi-module six-month programme has been running for 20 years and is recognised as the foremost leadership development programme for the sector. More than 60 UK Vice Chancellors or Principals are either former or current participants.

Each cohort spends part of the programme in an international higher education setting in order to widen their understanding the variety of issues and challenges that can impact institutions due to the specific contexts in which they operate.

Western Australia context

Braden, who is himself a participant in the 51st Cohort of TMP, spoke about his experiences of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in the context of Western Australia and said:

“Across the world, minoritised and marginalised staff and students face systematic barriers that impact both their professional and personal lives.

“From my experience here in the Australian higher education sector, I believe that academia requires a new breed of equity-minded leaders who are astute at respectfully, yet proactively, leveraging or relinquishing their power, privilege and authority to address those systematic barriers head-on.

“It’s a pleasure to welcome to Australia my higher education colleagues from Ireland, the UK, Italy and Malaysia as well as Australia itself.

“They have ahead of them a full programme of learning and development that I believe will transform the way they perceive and conduct their roles as leaders in their own institutions.”

New perspectives

Later in the week, the programme participants will also hear from Lenka Ucnik, assistant director of the Higher Education Integrity Unit at Australia’s Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA), as well as visiting a range of institutions in the region.

Programme Director Louisa Hardman said: “This international element of the programme enables those taking part to step outside their immediate higher education context and view things from a new perspective.

“We aim to make the learning and development truly immersive and a massive part is the creation of strong peer groups with whom participants will continue to learn and grow long after they have completed the programme itself.”

Find out more about Advance HE’s Top Management Programme here.

Our new Strategic Leadership development portfolio for 2023-24 supports those in senior or strategic roles with their development of a strategic outlook and skill set to lead across organisational boundaries. Find out more.

Members benefit from a 25% discount on booking prices and there is an additional 10% early booking discount for bookings made before 30 September 2023 on selected programmes and events.

We feel it is important for voices to be heard to stimulate debate and share good practice. Blogs on our website are the views of the author and don’t necessarily represent those of Advance HE.

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