Rural and remote students to learn about university life

HIGH school students in the North and South Burnett regions will have a glimpse of university life this week when USQ Fraser Coast staff visit their schools.

USQ events co-ordinator Stephanie Bayley, school liaison officer Carly Ryder and lecturer Ian Richards will visit schools in Eidsvold, Munduberra, Gayndah, Proston and Biggenden to introduce students to university as part of the Uni Life program.

Ms Bayley said the USQ program will be delivered in three parts, the first of which begins on Monday, and targets Year 10 students in rural and remote parts of the Burnett region who may not currently see university as a viable option due to their circumstances once they leave school.

"We will give students a taste of what university study is like to help them decide if university education is an option for their post-secondary school studies, and if so, whether distance or on-campus study will suit them better," she said.

"The following week we set up students on Study Desk, our online learning platform with which they can try out distance education from where they live and interact with fellow participants.

"The third stage of Uni Life brings the students to our campus in Hervey Bay where they can experience university life in a coastal setting and see firsthand that the lecturers are approachable and classes smaller compared to large city universities, which can sometimes be overwhelming for students from regional and remote areas of Queensland."

Uni Life has been running since 2006 and is funded through the Universities Office of Social Justice UPPP Fund under the University Participation and Partnership Program.

Ms Bayley said this year the project had secured the experience of USQ lecturer Dr Richards who would be presenting sustainability topics to the students including how our modern disposable lifestyle affects our planet.

"Dr Richards has many years' experience teaching with USQ and is looking forward to meeting rural students next week," she said.

The Fraser Coast team will visit schools in Eidsvold (Monday), Mundubbera (Tuesday), Gayndah and Proston (Wednesday) and Biggenden (Friday) to present the in-school portion of the program.

"As well as learning about campus and online options, students will also hear about the different pathways into university through TAFE, work experience, TPP or straight from school."

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